||In Lasting Memory of September 11, 2001
Archive Page 2
July 27th, 2007 by Jack Trimpey
©2007, Jack Trimpey. All rights reserved.
Over the last several months, I received a steady stream of emails about the Midtown Group, an Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) group in Washington D.C., that reportedly fosters the sexual exploitation of young women by sponsors.
Appealing to those with an appetite for lurid stories, the Washington Post reports: In the Midtown Group, female sponsors are actually pimps who refer their tender, young sponsees into the clutches of older sexual predators. According to today’s story in the Washington Post, one such sponsor describes how she referred her young, female sponsees to male sponsors, encouraging the underage girls to have sex with them because that would help them remain sober, one-lay-at-a-time. In other words, the girls became sacrifices to please the Beast Almighty.
The Midtown Group has become a sensational media story, not because it signals a fundamental problem with the practice of corralling tentatively “sober” substance abusers into tight, inbred, long-term relationships, but purely because of the exciting tales of victimhood emanating from that particular group. Because the public doesn’t really care about what goes on in recovery group meeings, only the sex stories have brought the Midtown Group to media attention. The American addiction tragedy — the recovery group movement itself — has gone undetected, unmentioned, un-reported.
The counseling professions, aided by mainstream media pumped up with Hollywood mythology, is running a bulldozer of interference protecting the broader 12-step fellowship of addiction from serious scrutiny. They employ a special manner of speaking, steptalk, a language of spin, that reflects the perceptions, beliefs and values surrounding the recovery group movement. Steptalk plucks our heartstrings as it deceives us.
Here are the main elements of steptalk currently being used to defend the recovery group movement in the light of the Midtown Group sex scandal:
1. The Midtown Group sex scandal is an aberration, a dysfunctional recovery group that arose from malignant social cultism surrounding one charismatic sponsor, Mike Q, who, during his 60’s, achieved rock-star, stud status among the local AA groupies. AA is not a cult, but the Midtown Group became like a cult. Already, some are saying that the Midtown Group isn’t even an AA group. According to that twisted logic, the Midtown Group has strayed so far from AA’s wholesome standards that they have withdrawn by default from AA. That is so-o-o-o like an addict’s con job!
I have answered the telephone at Rational Recovery Headquarters for twenty years, and I assure the reader that the Midtown Group is no aberration. I have known of many Mike Q’s, and heard from numerous families fractured by 13th step, sexual infidelity. Sexual exploitation is rife in the recovery group movement, which is exactly what we should expect when addicted people are forced by lack of choice into confined, long-term, primary relationships with other irresolute substance abusers, practicing a lifestyle so devoid of intrinsic reward that the promises of eventual benefit must be posted on the walls.
Of course, recovery groupers everywhere are going to screw like a cage full of bunnies! They do this everywhere that substance abusers coagulate into abject fellowships consisting of fast-living, I-want-it-now, substance abusers and lonely, depressed people estranged by addiction from their families. Sexual error is a cardinal sign of addiction, reflecting the impairment of moral judgment caused by alcohol, and part of the comprehensive breakdown of moral functioning caused by addiction.
2. In the Post article, the topic of AA scandal is strategically balanced by this out-of-the-blue, gratuitous praise:
“Over eight decades, Alcoholics Anonymous, a pioneer in the support-group model of treatment, has grown to attract about 2 million members in more than 100,000 groups. Despite a stellar reputation and worldwide brand, it has never been more than a set of bedrock traditions. It has no firm hierarchy, no official regulations, and exercises no oversight of individual groups.”
Which is to say, AA will not respond to complaints by families affected by the Midtown Groups treachery. Instead, they must grapple with local courts, local agencies, local politics, all of which are tended to by the local 12-step activists and functionaries, i.e., the 12-step syndicate. In other words, Alcoholics Anonymous is neither accountable, nor liable, for the conduct nor for the effects of the Midtown Group, nor of any other of its cell-groups found in every local community. Now, let me ask you, isn’t AA Central just like every alcoholic or addict you’ve ever known? “It’s not my fault. I’m not responsible. Don’t look at me. I have nothing to say about it. I’m above criticism. It’s really someone else’s fault.”
The character of AA itself follows the beliefs, practices, and values common to addicted people. Any two substance abusers can start a group, attract new members from our social service system, gain favor with the media using the holy name of Alcoholics Anonymous, and claim to be the final authorities on the subjects of addiction and recovery. They are secretive, above criticism, above accountability, above controversy, above liability, have no opinions on anything except a very narrow range of practical matters. Members may not speak for AA, even if they are substance abuse counselors with advanced degrees in the learned professions. As private citizens, however, AA members may promote AA, glorify AA, and defend AA as long as they don’t “break anonymity,” meaning they cannot admit they are members of AA. It is a secret, shadow organization using anonymity as a shield, as if anonymous means confidential. Members do not realize that anonymity is worthless to members, but vitally important to the organization.
3. The 12-step syndicate, the addiction treatment industry in particular, is condemning the Midtown Group, as if the offenses aren’t widespread. Every effort is being made by the 12-step syndicate to advance the official story that the pimp stories are rare abuses and unproved allegations, certainly far outweighed by the wonderful AA program that has helped millions of people, more people than any other program. These official criticisms aim to convey that Midtown Group is a rogue fellowship that should be expunged, to maintain the long tradition of wholesome, selfless altruism aimed at restoring victims of addictive disease to sanity and positive living. The 12-step syndicate hopes their condemnation of the Midtown Group will resemble cutting out a local infection from a larger, otherwise healthy organism.
Here some specific practices that are being presented as aberrations that rarely occur elsewhere:
A. Isolating newcomers from mainstream society. This is universal in the recovery group movement. Addiction treatment centers restrict reading material, cut off all family visitation, permit telephone calls, etc., as part of isolating inductees from the outside world. Total immersion is best exemplified by the universal “90-in-90” standard, whereby newcomers are expected to attend a meeting every day for three consecutive months.
B. The pattern of sexual exploitation commonly known as “13th-stepping.” This is commonplace, part of the recovery group subculture, as shown by having its own universal step-jargon word.
C. Predicting suffering and death for dissenters or dropouts. This is the infamous “Curse of AA” about which I’ve been writing about for decades.
D. Pressuring members to discontinue psychiatric medications, as if they are street drugs. Again, this is a practically unversal attitude and practice in the 12-step movement, unabated since I first complained of it while I worked for Community Mental Health in California 25 years ago.
E. Micro-management of newcomers personal affairs and lives, total intrusion of the “new family” into the minds and families of members. Our Insanity of AA page details the intense social cultism experienced by people all over the world, for the last several decades. Consequently, recovery group disorder is common in the fellowship, and the cause of much suffering and family disruption.
Fellowship of addiction, not of recovery.
America doesn’t have a drug problem, nor an alcohol problem, nor an addiction problem. She has an AA problem, and has been overtaken by a subculture of addicted people who are devoted to making the world more hospitable to self-intoxication and other vice. Wherever two or more addicted people join together, they may call themselves, Alcoholics Anonymous, and a new fellowship of addiction exists. Together, they have in common a set of perceptions, beliefs, and values that form the foundation of their relationship, beliefs and values that are sharply at odds with the foundations of family life and human civilization. The entire recovery group movement, and its business arm, the addiction treatment industry, is a giant fellowship of addiction carried forward on the deceptive nature and ruthless character of addiction itself. What could be more alarming than that?
We all know the nature and character of addiction. It is ugly, immoral, antisocial, devious, and ruthless in its struggle to survive. That is the underlying character of Alcoholics Anonymous, of its recovery doctrines, of its 100,000 cell-groups, of its school of thousands of non-profit fishes, and of the substance abuse counselors who comprise the medically-oriented addiction treatment industry. Mostly from good families, AA members once fell into the moral abyss of addiction, coalesced with similarly inclined people, and have never climbed out. Lodged by 12-step doctrine between using episodes, they are engaged in original denial, which means these things:
1. they deny the moral dimension of self-intoxication,
2. they deny the moral imperative of immediate, permanent, voluntary abstinence,
3. they craftily shift the moral burden of their own vice:
a. onto their ancestors, whose beliefs and values they have defied,
b. onto their suffering families, which they have injured and betrayed,
c. onto codependents and enablers everywhere, who are their primary victims, and
d. onto society and its taxpayers, upon whom they are increasingly dependent.
4. they reserve the option to intoxicate themselves (have a relapse) whenever they really feel like it
5. they refuse to apologize for their past self-intoxication by using the pretense of disease,
6. they expect their families, society, the courts, their patients, and God to accept tentative abstinence, i.e., “one-day-at-a-time sobriety,” as if such moral laziness should be admired.
Recovery groups, whether spiritual or psychological, are social manifestations of addiction itself. They impose the inverted beliefs and values of addiction upon newcomers in the form of quasi-religious doctrines. The lifestyle advanced by recovery groups is an emulation of normalcy, an imitation of human life seen through the eyes of animals, and as human life is experienced in the simplified emotional field of addicted people.
The recovery group is a primary group, an emulated family, even introducing itself to newcomers, “Hi, we’re your new family!” The 12-step program is an emulation of religion, borrowing the dignity and trust accorded religion, while substituting a moral code fit for a snail. What sane moral code would deny the immorality of self-intoxication among problem drinkers? Why should we respect someone who refuses to guarantee lifetime abstinence to the family he betrayed through the ultimate self-indulgence, substance addiction? Why would groupers inventory their drunken behavior but exclude the act of self-intoxication from moral inventories? What sort of adult must try to “be good” every day of his life by doing moral inventories and rituals of recovery, unless he has no core of moral integrity?
When irresolute substance abusers get together for any reason, especially after dark, we can be certain they’re up to no good. They operate on the direct, biological voltage of addiction, using forms of language compatible with the addictive mandate, i.e., the Addictive Voice. Meetings start with the self-contradicting proclamation, “AA is a totally self-supporting non-profit organization…,” and the ensuing program is delivered in clever slogans and mottoes that squelch good questions and dissent.
Midtown Madness in Your Town
Recovery groupers are desperately unhappy from their own self-indulgences, have a sense of loss of personal control, lonely, depressed, and yearning for any sign of warmth, affection, or closeness. They are vulnerable to misguidance by any warm hand outstretched to help. They are also sociopaths, all of them, who naturally live double lives, loyal first to the addictive mandate, and then emulating their family roles as necessary.
Recovery groups are hot, singles-scene gatherings with undercurrents of sexuality between people whose chief common trait is impulsive, instant gratification of bodily desires. What could be more predictable than sexual involvements among a group of substance abusers in a state of comprehensive moral collapse, currently estranged from their families, alienated from mainstream society, professing powerlessness over bodily desire, spending more time with each other than with their families, in unsupervised evening meetings during evening hours when they are struggling most to deny themselves addictive pleasures?
Just at the moment of marital crisis, when the addict is forced to choose between his family and addiction, a moment when the heat of marital conflict has stoked the fires of addictive rage, the recovery group steps in as an outside ally offering the addict the cover of disease, and the deceptive appearance of constructive action. They are a new primary group, a permanent, new family, offering the emotional support, the unconditional acceptance, the affection, companionship, and, yes, the sexual contact wisely and appropriately denied by the members’ spouses and extended families.
The recovery group has contempt for original family values, which are incompatible with the rules and beliefs required of addiction. The disease concept of addiction indicts the immediate family as codependents and enablers, responsible for the addict’s plight, and condemns the ancestral tree as a rotten gene pool from which the seeds of their collective misery have fallen. Recovery groupers are not family people at all, and will not accommodate their families’ reasonable demand that they abandon their addictions. They are groupers first and foremost, and expect that their families will accommodate their addictions accept the indignity of living under the uncertainty of one-day-at-a-time sobriety. Many carry amulets proudly stating their misplaced loyalty, “My Recovery Comes First!”
If AA were just another silly sect or social cult, there would be little need to expound on its deficiencies here or anywhere else. However, America has tragically rejected the traditions and religions of her founders and ancestors, and chosen Alcoholics Anonymous as the foundation of moral authority throughout her health and social service systems, so that today we are a 12-step nation, streaming Hollywood recovery mythology into every home, school, church, and agency.
The fact is that AA Central, the General Services and World Service Organizations in New York City, is the administrative center of a vast political movement with cell-groups in every tiny locality, with members embedded throughout our health and social service systems, and with political activists in Congress, state legislatures, local government, and in appointed positions of great social responsibility and authority. Millions of men and women are forced into Alcoholics Anonymous by mandate, by intimidation, by force of law, and by lack of choice. The 12-step program does not work, but only instills the beliefs and values of chronic addiction into the minds of people who need only to discontinue the use of alcohol and other drugs.
There is no need for a competing version of AA, one that would consist of an alternative philosophy, alternative methods, catering to those who would refuse AA on religious or personal grounds. We now know that there is no need for AA in the first place, because recovery groups produce far less abstinence than no recovery programming at all. In other words, original family values, fortified by law-enforcement and enlightened public policies, will always be the most cost-effective, dignified, and Constitutional approach to mass, runaway addiction to alcohol and other drugs.
Long ago, Rational Recovery® fell into the trap of emulating AA’s inappropriate solution to addiction — group recoveryism based on the psychological disease concept of addiction. Rational Recovery® sponsored a great network of recovery groups, the Rational Recovery Self-Help Network (RRSN), with groups in 1000 cities. As AVRT® matured into the addiction-killing device it is today, the Rational Recovery Self-Help Network split into two irreconcilable factions, the backers of AVRT-based recovery and the hundreds of professional Advisors — substance abuse counselors who were part of the addiction treatment industry.
Although this schism appeared to be a setback, the outcome has been the emergence of independent recovery as the crown jewel of addiction recovery. Due to its cost-effectiveness and congruity with science, morality, ethics, the law, and the old-fashioned common sense contained in universal family values, AVRT® is the very best avenue for individuals, for families, and as social policy in every community.
July 16th, 2007 by Jack Trimpey
Copyright 2007, Jack Trimpey, all rights reserved.
To those unacquainted with Wikipedia, it is an online, communal encyclopedia, consisting of articles on any subject by — well, by anyone. Once an article is posted, it may be revised or replaced by anyone. The problem is, just as with any encyclopedia, only one article informs the reader about any given subject. The editorial policy of Wikipedia is essentially like, “King of the Hill,” in which one goat butts the current goat off the hill, to become today’s headlines on reality.
I have been uncomfortable about the Wiki problem in recent years, as controversy has grown about its susceptibility to abuse. Alas, my concerns were justified when I recently got a “heads-up” that Wiki had gone whacky on the subject of Rational Recovery.
Until recently, there had been a fairly good, objective Wikipedia presentation on Rational Recovery written by a physican. It gave a little background and presented the essence of AVRT-based recovery, providing encouragment for addicted people that their difficulties with recovery groups and addiction treatment need not stop them from recovering independently. Here is the new article, which replaced the original.
1. The new, anonymous article starts off: “This program is considered controversial by many in the 12-step community. It offends by vitriolic attacks on 12-step programs…” Who else in the world, besides members of AA themselves, believes AA is above criticism? This is an article about the perceptions of Rational Recovery by members of Alcoholics Anonymous. The central Wiki-message for desperate people and their families is, “Rational Recovery offends!” In this first sentence, the writer appears almost certainly to be a substance abuse counselor, very likely a “two-hatter” — an AA’r doing the 12-step program on his clients for a fee, while skirting AA’s Tradition 10, forbidding members from entering public controversy. By linking the word “dissociation” with its psychological meaning, he blows his cover. He probably meant “disassociation,” but such an error is unprofessional. In an upcoming blog article, I will discuss the pretend profession, substance abuse counseling.
2. Fully one-half of the article is on irrelevant research done on Rational Recovery over a decade ago, truly meaningless research that says nothing and about which no one cares in the least. There is scant use of current references, only out-of-date citations from the 1990’s, one that even goes to an archive of obsolete websites! The author’s sense of humor is absent, typical of persons in recovery, as he bites on this page as evidence of my madness. As for his expression “independent recovery treatment,” I think the Beast got his tongue.
3. Other than one sentence showing the writer’s ignorance, there is no discussion nor linkage to Addictive Voice Recognition Technique® (AVRT®. He mistakenly says AVRT® “…shows the practitioner that he is in control of the Addictive Voice, not the other way around.” (Recognition is not control, but quite the opposite.) There are numerous “busy links” in the material, but only one Rational Recovery link, “RR-FAQ,” added as an afterthought in “external links.” External links? The authentic source on Rational Recovery is not linked in the main text but only as a obscurely named, “external link?” In a related Wiki article on “Jack Trimpey,” there is no link to the Rational Recovery website.
There is, however, a clear link to “Drink too much?” This is to a website associated with State University of New York which is obviously part of the 12-step syndicate, i.e., the addiction treatment industry and its business arm, the recovery group movement.
Independent recovery has been trashed by Wikipedia. The Rational Recovery page is now a portal to the addiction treatment industry. Behold, the 12-step syndicate in action!
According to the Wiki rules, I am now supposed to go to the Wiki website and make corrections, so that some “balanced” outcome will emerge, one that is far more accurate and truthful than the Rational Recovery literature and website. However, I’m not playing ball, for this simple reason:
Wikipedia is a classical example of Hegelian dialectics, more commonly known as dialectical materialism (DM). Very briefly, DM is the belief that ultimate reality is in a perpetual state of gradual change resulting from compromises of observations, opposing beliefs, or opinions. The changes may be imperceptibly small, but when they accumulate in quantity, the quality or identity of the whole is suddenly, radically changed, as in water boiling or social revolution.
For example, if I say my brother is a wonderful person, you may possibly believe me. However, if someone else says he’s a rotten person, then you will likely see him as a basically good, yet flawed, person. As other negative opinions accumulate, you may conclude he is a real bastard. However, even if my brother is a scoundrel, that is only coincidental because you have not observed him but only considered a democratic process in action. Politics is largely a process of dialectical materialism, wherein voters consider the good and bad allegations about the candidates. Thus, politics cannot bring truth but only blurred perceptions about people driven by various agendas.
1. Thesis: My brother is wonderful.
2. Antithesis: Jack’s brother is a scoundrel.
3. Synthesis: Jack’s brother is somewhere in between.
4. The Synthesis has now become a new Thesis, to be reconciled with successive rips against it by new, anonymous critics.
I won’t subject AVRT®, nor myself, to this kind of abuse, conducted under the Wiki-guise of intellectual and academic respectability. I am under no obligation to become a Wiki volunteer, devoted to Wiki-Dialectics.
Rather than schlep over to Wiki, I would much rather send as many people as possible to the Wikipedia article on Rational Recovery, as a way of further exposing the means by which the 12-step syndicate comandeers mainstream media and maintains its death-grip on America’s substance abusers. I trust that readers and visitors will make better judgments about independent recovery (AVRT-based recovery) than the official story from Wikipedia recommends. Some of you may want to post whatever you like, to correct or confirm the current mess. By all means, have fun at this.
You might ask, “Aren’t you engaged in dialectics, with your constant AA-bashing?” Well, no, because I do not present falsehoods as a strategy of destroying fellowships of addiction. DM plays loosely with the truth, valuing change and revolution (the ends) more than honesty and ethics (the means). I am always interested in objections to this website using citations or illustrations of error or falsehood. The Wiki hit-piece has no comprehension of what he impugns.
I use Wikipedia; I suppose most everyone does. It is a lazy way to get a quick take on anything. It often has good links out for further reading. Wikipedia is free, however, and as with all non-profit organizations you get what you pay for, and that’s not much.
An interesting contrast to the Wikipedia hit piece may be found at Wiki-How, which is the best example I’ve ever seen of how to advance the cause of independent recovery without infringing on our protected trademarks. This author sees the concept of AVRT® clearly, paraphrases an outline for independent recovery, and then gives due credit to AVRT® as the original source material. You should have another article, “How to Deliver the Goods Without Ripping Them Off.” Congratulations, Wiki-How!
By the way, Readers, there are also some vicious attacks on your mothers at Wikipedia. If you want to defend her, you’d better scurry on down there, look up your family name, and get busy learning the ropes of Wiki-dialectics.*
* Aw, c’mon, I was just kidding. I hope you get my point, though.
June 11th, 2007 by Jack Trimpey
©Copyright 2007, Jack Trimpey, all rights reserved.
I recently got this email from a suspicious person:
Why does the idea of rational recovery sound as if it is trying to provide a means of recovery or treatment? When one goes to sign up, the statement is made that AVRT is not a form of treatment. The feeling I get is that it is a legal disclaimer saying that all this is, is information on self recovery, but is not legally allowed to say it is a form of treatment. Can you help me understand this? — Matt P. MI
Alcoholism and addictive disease are inventions, not realities. Alcoholism was invented by Bill Wilson, a common drunk who founded AA as a personal distraction from his own unrelenting desire to get drunk. All of the experts of the time knew there was no treatment for addiction, so they gladly yielded their obnoxious, addicted patients to Mr. Wilson’s fringe group of eccentrics.
Since then, AA has become an enormous fellowship of addiction, spreading its message of dependency through its zealous members in positions of responsibilty and opportunity. Consequently, the disease concept of addiction is widely accepted, a paradigm that makes it appear to you that addiction is a treatable condition, and that treatments do exist. These are faulty assumptions, based upon the false belief that addiction is or is caused by a pre-existing or acquired disease.
There are many who would like to identify AVRT® as a form of addiction treatment so they can (1) prohibit others from offering it to addicted people, and (2) charge fees for offering it as a form of addiction treatment. For example, the addiction treatment industry in California continues to lobby and legislate for licensure for substance abuse counselors, so that the only ones who can provide guidance to addicted people will be members of AA.
If AVRT® is identified as a form of addiction treatment, then it can be outlawed by the licensing authorities, unless offered by licensed substance abuse counselors, who are constitutionally incapable of explaining or even presenting AVRT®. Others may attempt to offer AVRT® as a professional service, as if it were a form of addiction treatment. Of course, that is both illogical, since AVRT® is independent recovery, and unlawful, because of the service mark. In other words, AVRT® is incompatible with the addiction treatment format, which presumes hidden causes, pathogenesis, addictive disease, and an elaborate array of worthless clinical servics.
Rational Recovery® is a refuge from the 12-step syndicate, which includes all of its groups and thousands of its false-front addiction treatment centers owned and operated by professional 12-steppers. Our mission page is here:
About Rational Recovery®
I am determined that AVRT® will remain free of charge, and never incorporated into the addiction treatment industry. The service mark simply prevents professionals and agencies from offering AVRT® to the public as part of addiction treatment. Although addiction treatment has become very popular, it helps no one, because there is no treatment or cure for stupidity, nor for immoral conduct.
The best outcome of addiction treatment is life in recovery, an outcome so depressing that most customers prefer active addiction and soon speak with their actions. Consequently, the only people who actually recover, and live as normal adults in freedom and dignity, do it independently, based upon their native beliefs and values. AVRT® is simply a description of the common thread of independent recovery, set forth in a brief, educational format.
Many thousands of addicted people recover simply by reading through the The Crash Course on AVRT®. However, AVRT® takes no credit at all for those success stories, because they are based upon the native beliefs and values of each individual who recovers. Here is one story that tells more about the nature of AVRT® than any amount of verbiage I can pour out:
I came across your site through Wikipedia while researching for useful tools for a friend who recently confided in me his own alcohol addiction, and desire to stop drinking. I stoppped drinking myself a few years ago through some similar techniques I discovered on my own. I’ve been reading your website and you said you are interested in hearing how others have stopped their addictions on their own, so I thought I’d share what worked for me.
I was a closet drunk for a few years, basically starting drinking heavily through a real stressful part of my life, and then became addicted because I simply liked the feeling of being loaded really. Anyway, it’s pretty irrelevant how I got there now, but that I quit my addiction for good.
I’ve always been a very self reliant, independent person, and the idea of going to a shrink, or heaven forbid, a quasi-religious cult like AA was abhorent to me. I guess I just got to a point where this addiction was ruining my life in so many ways, I finally said enough! I can’t be drinker anymore, period, it’s simply not an option. It became totally unnaceptable to me.
I said I will never drink again, and I meant that. It was scary as hell at first making that commitment, I felt very insecure thinking of life without my old friend booze, I actually wanted a drink more than ever!. But I knew in my heart, intuitively that was the only way. I took a week off from work to do my “detox” on my own.
After a few days, the worst of the withdrawl symptoms were gone and I started feeling a whole lot better, but of course I still felt the desire to drink, but I wouldn’t go back to the hell of addiction, no way. I basically learned to let those feelings be, not try to fight them, but to just acknowledge them, but not act on them, and let them pass. I let my intellect be in control, not the booze hound.
It got surprisingly a lot easier after a while, just knowing that I’m in control, and those feelings would go away with just a thought, really, and would be powerless. Real easy, actually. It sounds very similar to AVRT in a lot of ways, perhaps anything that actually works is. And since I was a non drinker now, my moods, my energy level, my self confidence, all of it increased dramatically.
AVRT® was awesome and empowering, and no meetings or expensive shrinks. I can’t see the point in the “one day at a time,” disease model BS of AA. That seems like a very draining, unrewarding lifestyle that actually enables addiction. How awful!
I quit drinking, and once I realized I was in control, never went back, case closed. I made up my mind, and it’s behind me now. I rarely, if ever think about drinking anymore, it’s no longer part of my identity. It all reminds me of I believe a Zen saying I heard years ago, which I’m probably butchering to death: “A coward tries to hide from his desires; an enlightened person simply leaves them behind.”
Anyway, I gave my friend the address of your web site. It’s up to him whether he finds it useful or not. Your AVRT approach by far is the most sensical, honest, affirmative, and ultimately empowering one out there, I feel. Thanks for trademarking it and keeping it away from the whole “recovery” industry!
Thank you so much for the very interesting and well-written feedback on your own independent recovery. We receive thousands of “Thank you for AVRT®!” messages from people who have reclaimed their lives through our copyrighted and trademarked materials, but we get a special thrill hearing from people who figure out AVRT® all on their own, without ever hearing the words, ” Rational Recovery®,” just as I did back in the early 1980′s.
You and I, plus millions of others who have had serious drinking problems, and who fit every definition of “alcoholic” or “addict,” quit habitual vices every year, including alcohol and other hedonic drugs, gambling, sexual error, stealing, anorexia, bulemia, overeating, cigarette smoking, and other pleasure-producing substances and activities. Yet, when we do quit, demonstrating that we know something vitally important to others suffering from addiction, including their families, we are marginalized as “never had the problem in the first place,” “not a real alcoholic or real addict,” or worse, ” dry-drunk.”
It’s a good thing you trusted your intuitions about recovery groups and stayed away. You were on the verge of complete recovery, but if you had sat down in an AA meeting, you would have been jerked back from the brink and told that willful abstinence if futile, actually a symptom of the dread, unidentified disease, alcoholism. Against your better judgment, you may have conceded your better judgment and settled on one-day-at-a-time sobriety in order to consider the entire matter. Millions of newcomers succumb this way, and are soon visited by the sweet venom of recovery doctrine, which is truly 200 proof Addictive Voice.
Your experience was not “like AVRT®;” it was the generic, real-life drama of independent recovery I have synthesized into AVRT®. Remember, the definition of AVRT® is “the lore of independent recovery from substance addiction in a brief, educational format.” I’m determined to keep AVRT® free as the air we breathe, safe from the rapacious addiction treatment industry and its feeder system, the recovery group movement, both of which justify addiction, personal dependency, and substance abuse using clinical and occult language.
I will post your letter prominently at the website, so that others may be encouraged to undertake addiction recovery as a personal responsibility rather than as an anonymous, group project on the margins of society.
May 28th, 2007 by Jack Trimpey
©2007, Jack Trimpey, all rights reserved.
- Tell him he is powerless over his desire to drink.
- Tell him his problems are driving him to drink.
- Tell him he is congenitally defective, suffering an interited disease, “alcoholism,” that is causing him to drink.
- Tell him that if he could have quit drinking by now, he would have, and the fact that he has not yet quit proves that he has been powerless to do so because of his alcoholism.
- Tell him that if he doubts he has the disease of alcoholism, he is in denial, which is a symptom of the disease of alcoholism.
- Tell him his drinking is a coping mechanism for issues he must yet discover.
- Tell him he’s an alcoholic, and if he think’s he’s normal, he’ll drink.
- Tell him he should find coping mechanisms other than drinking.
- Tell him that some problem drinkers can drink moderately, but real alcoholics cannot.
- Tell him that, if he is really careful, he can drink moderately and prove he’s not a real alcoholic.
- Tell him that he can’t know if he’s a real alcoholic until he finally “hits bottom,” when his losses are enormous and he has harmed many people or possibly killed someone. Then, he’s a real alcoholic.
- Tell him he can never know if he’s really hit bottom or has only reached a “false bottom.”
- Tell him that his logical idea of quitting the use of alcohol and other drugs for the rest of his life is a way of denying that he has a disease, which is a symptom of the disease of alcoholism.
- Tell him that every drunken episode kills off another 50,000 brain cells that are necessary for good judgment.
- Tell him that alcoholics metabolize alcohol differently, in that their livers release yet another substance, “THIQ,” that is more addictive than heroin.
- Tell him he’s a quart low on serotonin, which is why he’s depressed, and that by drinking he’s trying to make up for his seratonin.
- Tell him he cannot expect himself to just quit drinking, but should get help, which means going to a recovery group or to a counselor who has never been addicted or who has not resolved his/her own addiction.
- Tell him that his family is partly responsible for his excessive alcohol intake, particularly the codependents and and enablers that surround all “alcoholics.”
- Tell him he must immediately stop trying to quit drinking altogether, but only try to stay sober, with the help of the Creator of the Universe, just one-day-at-a-time.
- Tell him that, if he just abstains from alcohol without getting religion or spirituality, he will become a“dry drunk,” — a miserable, angry person, incapable of happiness, who will inevitably return to drinking.
- Tell him that he is little more than a bundle of character defects and must always struggle to be good and remain sober.
- Tell him he has issues that make him drink, and that his opinions on everything are worthless.
- Tell him that, for him and other problem drinkers, the act of self-intoxication is an innocent act, a symptom of a mysterious disease they deny having.
- Tell him that, although his drinking is not a moral issue, he is morally responsible for his drunken behavior.
- Tell him that in order to refrain from drinking, he must discover a new interest or satisfaction to replace the gratification produced by alcohol.
- Tell him that by not getting drunk he is creating a deep spiritual void that only God can fill.
- Tell him that he is at high risk of relapse if he becomes hungry, angry, lonely or tired, and that any combination of these constitute being “in relapse.”
- Tell him that he should turn his life over to a deity entirely of his own imagination.
- Tell him he should pattern his life based on the lives of AA old-timers, especially following the example of AA founder Bill Wilson, a lifelong addicto-depressive who demanded a drink on his deathbed.
- Tell him that he cannot refrain from drinking on his own, and that he must have the continuous social and emotional support of other substance abusers who have not resolved their own addictions.
- Tell him that he must form a juvenile, dependent relationship with another substance abuser who is also reserving the privilege of future relapses.
- Tell him that he must rely upon a god of his own creation to restore him to sanity.
- Tell him that “Treatment works!” because the government and addiction treatment experts say it works.
- Tell him he should get substance abuse counseling and addiction treatment conducted by other substance abusers who attend recovery groups themselves, who reserve the privilege of future relapses, and who are sober, one-day-at-a-time.
- Tell him that seeking conscious contact with God by praying daily to Him for good fortune, wisdom, serenity, sobriety, and other benefits is not religious, but something entirely different — spiritual.
- Tell him he must leave his family in the evenings and attend group meetings of the same substance abusers he has been hanging out with for years.
- Tell him he must attend recovery group meetings for the rest of his life, and that any resistance to doing this is a symptom of the the disease of alcoholism.
- Tell him he should fear his desire to drink, for he is powerless over it, and that if he has a moment of desire, he should immediately call his sponsor or get to the very next recovery group meeting.
- Tell him that he has the disease of relapse, and that relapse is a normal, expected part of addiction recovery.
- Tell him that relapses just happen to people, just as with other diseases like cancer, asthma, and multiple sclerosis.
- Tell him that sometimes there is no human defense against having the first drink, that only God can intervene in addictive desire.
- Tell him that he should tell all of his personal secrets and confidential information to everyone at public meetings of irresolute substance abusers held at the town square.
- If he commits a crime such as drunk driving while under the influence, arrest him, throw the book at him, give him a stiff sentence, and then tell him that he was powerless to not drink in the first place. By no means suggest or accept that he might revoke his own drinker’s license; it’s the driver’s license or else. Offer him leniency if he accepts, believes, and acts upon all of the listed items above, 1 – 42.
- As a last resort, when all of these approaches fail, as would seem very likely, tell him that an “alcoholic” is just a self-excusing ass, and that his drunkenness is the ultimate self-indulgence, the ultimate betrayal, the intolerable offense against you. Tell him that unless he immediately quits drinking and vows to abstain under all conditions for the rest of his life, you will abandon him to the natural consequences of his immoral conduct, however painful or lethal they may be. Explain that you love the memory of him before he transformed himself into an animal, and that you want him back under the necessary condition of zero tolerance for any further use of alcohol and other drugs. Tell him if he consumes so much as one drop of alcohol, or takes even one pleasure pill or other dope, he will thereby forsake you forever. Tell him that one-day-at-a-time sobriety isn’t good enough for you because you refuse to continue to live with someone who won’t make a guarantee of loyalty, to forsake the pleasures of addiction until death. Be sure he has direct access to authentic Rational Recovery® learning materials which set forth Addictive Voice Recognition Technique® (AVRT®), so that he may soon come to you and say, “I will never drink again, and I’ll never change my mind.” Then and only then may he begin to apologize for his past drunkenness, for one cannot apologize for something he knows he may do once again. Send him to this link on the Internet:
The Crash Course on AVRT®
Make sure he has a personal copy of Rational Recovery: The New Cure for Substance Addiction. By all means review this article on zero-tolerance in the family.
Because he is free to choose between good and evil, he may choose his addiction over you. If he continues to suffer and die, it will not be on your account or in your home, and in your grief, you will know that by choosing his addiction he has granted you the rest of your life to live on your own terms rather than on the terms of his animal nature, and that he has exchanged the best thing he ever had for the cheap thrills of addiction. For that you may be grateful and hope he will suffer the least and finally rest in peace.
If he chooses you, however, you may be on the path toward a reconciliation you’ve longed for, a reconciliation that will restore him to his family, to freedom and to dignity.
May 18th, 2007 by Jack Trimpey
©2007, Jack Trimpey, LCSW, all rights reserved.
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) was conceived by two intelligent, well-educated men, Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith, both of whom were severely addicted to alcohol, and neither of whom finally defeated their own addictions. Behind closed doors, they admitted their ghastly sense of powerlessness over addictive desire, and shared stories of personal failure and degeneracy.
They were a rare combination of character and talent. Bill Wilson was a raising-the-dead necromancer (a channeler, like John Edward), and Dr. Bob was a physician-drunk. Their combined input produced a magnificent compromise between the rigors of moral decency, which they loathed and feared, the prestige of religion and science, which they both understood very well, and the call of the wild, which we may deduce from their actions, was closest to their hearts.
Shortly before they met and founded Alcoholics Anonymous, Mr. Wilson had been through a number of spa-like addiction treatment programs without success, medical programs remarkably similar in methods and outcomes to today’s addiction treatment centers. Following intense, emotional turmoil and apparent psychotic episode at a hospital that treated addiction with hallucinogenic drugs, Bill Wilson remained extremely restless, desperately running away from addictive desire. He became obsessed with saving other drunkards from themselves, possibly as his own wish-fulfillment to be rescued from himself. In other words, he did not recognize his messianic mission as part of an underlying, immutable plan to get drunk. His chaotic outreach, however, resulted in a chance enounter with his future cohort, Dr. Smith.
Dr. Smith was on the verge of professional and personal suicide, drinking during surgical procedures in the operating room as well as in his professional office. Mr. Wilson was convinced he’d resume drinking unless he was actively persuading other drunks to become like him — sober, but also compelled to help other drunks become sober. It began as a simple, pyramid scheme to build a network of drunks policing, comforting, and redeeming other drunks, but it soon took on grand dimensions with enormous political and social significance. Dr. Bob, similiarly infatuated with addictive pleasures, found Mr. Wilson’s proposal curiously attractive. Before long, he became the first substance abuse counselor, as the medical director of a 12-step addiction treatment program he initiated at St. Thomas Hospital in Akron. He was the original “two-hatter,” engaged in a dual relationship with his addicted patients, recruiting them into his own nascent religious cult.
Continue reading ‘The Ancestry of Substance Abuse Counseling’
March 5th, 2007 by Jack Trimpey
©2007, Jack Trimpey, all rights reserved.
In the handout materials for AVRT: The Course, is a sheet titled, “Guidelines,” which sets some ground rules for the four-day trek to AVRT-based recovery. Item 3 is:
3. You will probably enjoy the company of the other participants. However, this is not a good place to form relationships. At the onset, you have nothing in common with the other participants but the love of addictive pleasures and a history of bad judgment. I will discourage some kinds of interaction.
Some are uneasy with this notice, particularly the ones who have had substantial exposure to recovery groups, substance abuse counseling, and addiction treatment services. I always explain that AVRT: The Course is not addiction treatment, nor a kind of counseling or therapy, and that I am neither interested in hearing about the problems caused by addiction, nor in hearing about anyone’s personal or social background. I explain that everyone present has suffered greatly, inflicted suffering on others. I make the sweeping assumption that all participants are currently depressed because of the direct effects of alcohol and other drugs, and because of the depressing situations that always attend addiction.
I suggest that AVRT: The Course is more like an algebra class, although the subject matter is considerably simpler and easier to learn. Because learning AVRT® is an individual, sink-or-swim responsibility, compassionate comments, supportive statements, and empathetic helping are inappropriate, just as in algebra class.
Occasionally, a magnetic fascination develops among certain participants. They tend to sit together, seek eye contact with each other, and make sidelong comments to each other during the presentation. They are quite supportive of each other, coming to quick agreement on elusive issues while others continue to struggle. They are also quite defensive of each other when called on a point of learning. Ignoring my advice, they exchange email addresses and phone numbers, and make plans to stay in touch even though they have no good reason whatsoever to get in touch.
Fellowship of the Beast
This unwarranted familiarity and loyalty is a fellowship of addiction, a spontaneous meeting of minds among substance abusers who share a common life agenda, common beliefs, and common values. AA is a fellowship of addiction spawned by its currently-addicted founders, Bill Wilson and Bob Smith. If there were no such thing as AA, addicted people such as these would still discover each other, share fellowship with each other, have similar beliefs and values concerning substance abuse, defend each other against common standards of decency and moral conduct.
The camaraderie of addicted people, coupled with their circle-the-wagons defense against the civilized world is nicely summed up by notorious imbiber, W. C. Fields, “Never trust a man who doesn’t drink.” Mimicking Jesus, Bill Wilson stated more doctrinally, “Any two or three alcoholics gathered together for sobriety may call themselves an AA group.” However, I say that when two or more substance abusers get together, especially after dark, they’re up to no good.
Heavy drinkers and other substance abusers enjoy a rare kind of camaraderie, which Bill Wilson called the “herd mentality.” They tend to view each other’s shortcomings with gentle understanding, and are quick to forgive each other’s offenses. They are united on certain principles, such as that self-intoxication is not a moral issue at all, that there are many causes of excessive self-intoxication, and that one can never be sure one won’t resume self-intoxication under certain, “perfect” conditions.
The social gravity between addicted people holds true even when addicted people are making great efforts, at significant personal expense, to defeat their addiction, such as when they register for AVRT: The Course. In addiction treatment, the natural cohesiveness of addicted people is idealized and regarded as therapeutic. In AVRT-based recovery, however, it is identified as mingling of Beasts, the joining together in fellowships of addiction, without awareness of the pathological tie that binds them together.
Such is the case in Alcoholics Anonymous! I have named AA the Fellowship of the Beast because it is a gathering of addicted people who have Continue reading ‘Fellowships of Addiction’
February 19th, 2007 by Jack Trimpey
©2007, Jack Trimpey, Founder, Rational Recovery
(Written for Congressional Quarterly, Feb. 9, 2007)
I know a woman twice convicted of drunk driving who finally quit drinking altogether, but is now mandated to addiction treatment. She knew after her first arrest she’d better quit drinking altogether, as other teetotalers in her family had done. However, she was sentenced to AA, where groupers warned her against quitting her addiction. Only one-day-at-a-time sobriety, while learning the stepwise piety of recoveryism, would suffice. Thus, was her problem drinking converted to chronic addiction. She had her obligatory “relapses,” and two years later she received her second DUI.
This time, in an unyielding act of moral judgment, she quit drinking for life. She has since abstained effortlessly without support, based on moral principle alone. However, during clinical interrogation, her probation officer (an AA member) discovered that she denies addictive disease, and considers self-intoxication by problem drinkers immoral. Noting her “deep denial,” he ordered her into 28-day rehab, where, under color of treatment, physicians and counselors certified as 12-steppers will wrench her from her original family values, impregnate her with addict-identity, stain her ancestry with congenital disease, and, upon discharge, require proof of AA immersion to retain custody of her children. When she tells her counselors she will never drink again, she is told, “This is not about abstinence; this is about surrender of control.” This true anecdote is standard operating procedure everywhere.
The public interest is that she abstain from alcohol, not in how she becomes abstinent. Addiction treatment is an economic black hole. A travesty of pseudoscience. An iatrogenic nightmare. An ethical catastrophe. A public danger. A violation of common sense and traditional American values. The 12-step program and group recoveryism make sense only to addicted people who deny the immorality of their own self-intoxication, and whose beliefs and values are comprehensively inverted. Addiction treatment does not work and aggravates addiction.
There can be no sanity nor success in the addictions field until independent recovery through abstinence alone is a viable option for all addicted people. Independent recovery is commonplace, costs nothing, is easily learned, and brings out the best in addicted people and government. Because the states will not revoke the drinking licenses they grant to citizens of age, we should therefore grant addicted people the privilege of doing so themselves, and accord them whatever leniencies and respect permanent abstinence suggests. Public funding for addiction treatment, especially when sponsored by 12-steppers in elected office, must not pass.
October 19th, 2006 by Jack Trimpey
Addiction mythology has had an astonishing effect on mainstream thinking. Yesterday’s newswires hummed with the recent scientific discovery that record numbers of citizens are being sucked into cyberspace, right through their desktop monitors. According to Stanford University scientists, the United States is full of computer addicts who are using their computers for non-essential purposes, often for 30 or more hours per week.
Most disturbing to the Stanford Scientists, was the discovery that many computer addicts hid their Internet surfing and computer activities, and, even worse, they actually used Internet activity to change their moods, to make themselves feel better. In other words, they were medicating themselves by watching YouTube movies and engaging in chats and other cyber-adventures.
Of course, this is alarming, but we should rest assured that funds are being allocated for the treatment of these very sick, cyber-crazed people. There are already a good number of online resources for computer addicts, provided prospective clients prefer the online cure to the online addiction.
Let us hope that the Stanford University scientists do not soon decide to investigate the extent of book addiction. I have relatives, including chldren and grandchildren, who can be found reading books at all hours of the day, often when they would better be otherwise occupied. I am sure they are attempting to change their moods by reading books, and I suspect they are even enjoying themselves, experiencing genuine pleasure as they blithely flip through page after page of printed text.
I am re-assured to know that the Stanford Scientists are not book addicts, and have not experienced the intense pleasure of reading, a life changing experience that can have lifelong consequences. I doubt they will be found reading anything at all, and I suspect none of them have actually read a book, cover-to-cover, in their entire lives. We can rest assured we are in good hands with a social service system so well prepared to guide us all through the obstacle course of life, including its many addictions such as computer addiction and book addiction.
Some of you may have noticed my writing addiction. I can’t stop, and I can’t predict the outcome of any given writing episode. One sentence is too many, and a thousand sentences is not enough. I write day after day, year after year, and I am hopeless that I can resist the desire to write, write, write.
I’ve been this way for ages. A decade ago, I wrote another piece on computer addiction. Unlike this very serious piece about the Stanford discovery, the last article was a joke. In other words, I was just kidding. I didn’t really mean the article to be factual, as this article is. If you can tolerate some writing done for the sheer enjoyment of writing, go to this link to Computer Addiction: Horrible New Scourge. You may not like it, but addictions are not often enjoyed by others.
September 15th, 2006 by Jack Trimpey
©Jack Trimpey, 2006, all rights reserved.
Here is an article published by the Journal of Labor Relations
pumping the benefits of drinking alcohol in terms of your personal finances. While successful men and women may also have a tendency to drink unequaled by their less successful, less affluent peers, it is doubtful that the original source of funding for this little piece of pop-science would agree that the money was well-spent.
I looked into the sponsoring organizations, the Locke Institute and the Reason Foundation, and I fail to see the basis for their interest in this odd topic, nor do I understand the logic for their assertions. The article is a bald invitation to underachievers everywhere to break out the booze in order to better meet their responsibilities to their families, employers, and communities by drinking alcohol. For clarity, let me point out that the original source of funds for this study was not the Locke Institute or the Reason Foundation. It came from a foundation supported by large, for-profit corporations or from the estates of people who were productive during their lifetimes.
According to this nonprofit research, men who drink will earn 10% more personal income than men who abstain, but if you are a woman, drinking will net you a hefty 14% more money than your abstinent sisters. Moreover, they proclaim that drinking provides educational opportunities, to learn business and social skills. These benefits have been discovered by scientists funded by nonprofit organizations that were funded by foundations that are funded by corporations and individuals whose courage, self-discipline, ingenuity, and productivity created wealth.
This allegedly scientific research into the wisdom of drinking alcohol has about as much common sense to it as the titillating science published by the nonprofit American Heart Association, which proclaims the benefits of drinking as a prevention of heart disease. It is possible for many risky behaviors to have beneficial, unintended side effects. However, I have no doubt that every problem drinker in America now weighs the health benefits of alcohol into his inner debate about his continued use of alcohol. I think I’ve heard from about half of them, personally.
The Locke Institute and the Reason Foundation are both nonprofit organizations, reliant upon unearned income to finance their dalliances. In other words, those who work there are apparently not engaged in productive activities, but are merely encumbering their budgets so they will be replenished next year. Much of the income for these dependent organizations comes from productive enterprises, corporations whose officers have been intimidated by the I.R.S., lured by the benefactor image, or shamed by other nonprofit organizations into giving large sums to nonprofit organizations. Ironically, both organizations have their origins in the individualism that forms the foundation for the greatest invention of humanity, the business corporation of capitalist societies.
John Locke was a British social philosopher of the Enlightenment era whose works have been incorporated into worldwide liberalism and now form the foundation for free enterprise and capitalism itself. The Reason Foundation boasts Libertarianism as its political ancestry, and claims to adhere to that true-grit individualism with limited government and emphasis on individual rights, free enterprise, and private property. Condidering their origins, it may seem strange that these nonprofit organizations would suggest that people drink in order to gain a 7% increase their income. However, there are few entities less congruent with John Locke’s works and Libertarian politics than the nonprofit organization, a dependent entity based upon the precepts of socialism and collectivism.
Recently, the entrepreneurial giant, Google.com, announced its plan to make use of the for-profit corporation in its effort to reduce human suffering. Google is certainly aware of the immense power of capitalism. Quite possibly, Google also suspects that altruism is flawed in that it often tends to foster dependence without solving the underlying causes of suffering. I think it is very likely that Google understands that the profit motive is a manifestation of the human spirit that unleashes creative energies unknown in the realm of altruistic benevolence.
The rewards of altruism are fleeting and sentimental, but doing urgent research to create and sell new products, structures, services, methods, and implements gives more to society than charity and more to the corporation than the profits. Driven to provide the greatest value possible to consumers by solving urgent problems, while cutting waste and redundancy to the minimum, profit-driven corporations are most often benevolent and purposeful, providing income for employees, revenue for government, and real value to consumers and society.
Most great advances in human civilization, including many in the arts, have been fueled by the profit motive, most of which have occurred in the last two hundred years. Those inventions and innovations very often bring enormous, immediate benefits that improve the quality of human life. Large, profitable corporations such as oil companies and pharmaceutical corporations are often villified even though they are very expensively engaged in reasearching, developing and producing new goods, services, products, methods, and remedies for ages-old afflictions that remain unsolved.
Nonprofit charities, e.g., the disease banners for cancer, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, and other serious illnessess rarely arrive at an actual solution for those problems, depleting their budgets with administrative and public relations activities while pharmaceutical companies and electronic industries discover the real solutions. The science of a for-profit, Swiss pharmaceutical company produced the miracle of DDT, but the nonprofit science of the environmental movement banned it worldwide, resulting in a public health catastrophe from unchecked malaria. While billions of tax dollars have been spent on nonprofit research into the nature of addiction and its treatment, no remedies have come from that research, and the nature of the problem has only been further mystified with scientific biobabble and worthless remedies.
Nonprofit science isn’t really science, but the application of scientific discourse to bogus, sentimental concepts, such as how alcohol makes us healthy, wealthy, and wise. In other words, nonprofit science, especially driven by the winds of politics, finds what its funders want to find. Nonprofiteering is very popular in the United States, because altruism is a common human failing. Currently, there are over 600,000 nonprofit organizations in the nation, with about 10,000 devoted to addiction and recoveryism. For-profit science finds what is good for the shareholders, and there is nothing better for shareholders than a truly beneficial, well-marketed product or service which is in great demand.
Altruism, dependence, and resentment
As a general rule, dependence breeds resentment because independence is inherently superior to dependence. No one really wants to be dependent, from children to the elderly, from the sick to the disabled. Dependence strains both parties, one with envy and frustration, the other with Continue reading ‘Drink and Get Rich’
September 10th, 2006 by Jack Trimpey
©2006, Jack Trimpey, all rights reserved
Drug courts are examples of a nefarious concept, “diversion programming,” whereby substance abusers protect each other from the legal consequences of their continued self-intoxication following their conviction of alcohol and drug related crimes. Members of AA in positions of social responsibility use the social service system to recruit new members, retain them for life, creating an enormous industry supported by millions of 12-stepping voters. Because AA/NA retains rather than releases its members, the population of men and women “in recovery” endlessly expands, overloading jails and prisons with people in the throes of one-day-at-a-time sobriety.
Starting in Miami, FL, about a decade ago, drug courts have spread to every state, following the nationwide network of addiction recovery groups. The drug courts promise lowered costs of addiction treatment versus prison confinement, and point to some statistics suggesting reduced re-arrests among those who complete the addiction treatment exercises. However, they completely ignore that recovery groups do not produce abstinent outcome but actually prevent principled abstinence and require tentative, one-day-at-a-time sobriety. That, of course, is the practical definition of addiction itself, so we have once again witnessed social policy in the service of addiction rather than in the service of recovery. Mass, runaway addiction to alcohol and other drugs ironically appears to be the cause rather than the result of our astronomically expensive addiction treatment industry.
Under California’s Proposition 36 law, persons diverted from prison to addiction treatment may have nine unsuccessful courses of “treatment” before being sent to or returned to prison. Each course of treatment may tolerate an undetermined number of “relapses” during supervised aftercare. The Drug Court is one of many innovative programs exemplifying the total failure of our social service system to help people to abstain from alcohol and other drugs and lead independent lives.
Below is a sample of a Relapse Kit given to a Proposition 36 diversion program participant by his parole officer in Butte County, California. Proposition 36 is California legislation diverting criminals from prison to addiction treatment. The Relapse Kit should dispel any doubt that drug courts are worthless and actually fan the fires of addiction, but from the perspective of addicted people and their supporters, the document may seem like a potentially useful tool in the addict’s valiant struggle against the terrible disease of addiction.
I will briefly comment on some of the questions asked of the probationer, to clarify from an AVRT® perspective:
Welcome, Drug Court Member to a journey of the self. Relapse can be a powerful place to learn more about who you are and what you need. After having a relapse, you are at risk of increasing your denial. This kit will work if you are honest, open and willing.
Relapse prevention is a crucial part of protecting your future. Relapses start way before you actually use. The intellectual, emotional, and physical process sets us up for use. In other words, what were you thinking, feeling, and how were you taking care of yourself before you used?
You have at your fingertips an entire team who wants to help you live a clean and sober life. Please reach out, we want to help. Good Luck!
1. What was the best part about using?
There is only one honest answer, “The buzz, the high.” Continue reading ‘The Addict’s Trusty Relapse Kit’