Moderation Management (MM) was founded by Audrey Kishline in 1994 as an ‘alternative’ to AA for those who had a ‘drinking problem’ but weren’t interested in complete abstinence. Kishline believed that there was a difference between ‘problem drinkers’ and ‘true alcoholics’ and that MM could fill a void in substance abuse treatment. Kishline later decided she was a ‘true alcoholic’ after all and rejoined AA in 2000. Two weeks later she killed a father and his daughter while “driving a hundred miles an hour in a total blackout” when going to visit her father.
At about 6 p.m., travelers Patricia Clark and her friend Brenda Keller were driving east on I-90 when Kishline suddenly pulled onto the highway from a wooded shoulder, heading in the wrong direction at 60 mph. After forcing a startled Clark to swerve into the farthest left lane to avoid a collision, Kishline veered into the tree-lined median, then reentered eastbound I-90, again in the wrong direction. “It scared us to death,” says Keller, who immediately dialed 911. During the next five minutes, a dozen horrified motorists phoned the police. “She kept running cars off the road,” says Det. Tom Hickman of the Washington State patrol. Richard “Danny” Davis, 38, and his daughter LaShell, 12, weren’t so lucky. Kishline’s one-ton brown pickup truck slammed head-on into their 1982 two-door Dodge. Davis died on impact, his daughter moments later. “We had to cut them out,” says Hickman. When police arrived on the scene, they found Kishline unconscious and unseat-belted, a half-empty bottle of 80-proof vodka beside her in the front seat. Two hours later at a Seattle hospital, tests showed her blood alcohol level to be 0.26, more than three times the state limit.
MM is just a front group for AA, whose purpose is to indoctrinate more people into the 12 Step cults by convincing them they might be ‘true alcoholics’ and to underscore the risks of guessing wrong. Of course, ‘alcoholism’ is completely fake. It’s a mischief cult for some (like Kishline) and for others it’s a brainwashing suicide cult (e.g. Robin Williams and Philip Seymour Hoffman and millions of others). Kishline killed herself last month, showing that for some people it can be both.
Kishline founded MM with Jeffrey Schaler, who is curator of a Thomas Szasz web site. Szasz is an anti-psychiatry psychiatrist who questioned the existence of mental illness and addiction. He believed that much of these conditions were faked, as if the participants were actors playing parts. (Szasz died a few years ago.) Schaler is obviously a smart and skeptical guy, but somehow he was bamboozled by Kishline into joining the board of MM. He later left, denouncing the organization he helped found, after she became more persistent in her doctrinal distinction between ‘problem drinkers’ and ‘true alcoholics’. Regarding her crime he wrote: “I support a life sentence in prison for Kishline. Another option would be to give her the opportunity to commit suicide.”
The other original members of MM’s board were Kishline’s husband Brian and psychologist Fred Rotgers of the Rutgers Center for Alcohol Studies. Rotgers has long promoted ‘harm reduction’ strategies and alternatives to the 12 Step approach. But he still believes in the existence of the ‘true alcoholic’ and sees MM as a pipeline into AA: “We now see a sizable minority of folks in MM who have moved to an abstinence goal”.
A recent comment on an article about Kishline’s suicide reveals Rotgers’ true sentiments:
As former Chairman of the Board of Moderation Management Network, Inc, I want to go on record about the major contribution to the health and well-being of Americans made by Audrey Kishline. Audrey was a visionary thinker and a pioneer in bringing science-based treatment alternatives to the American public. These alternatives, as Ms. Glaser notes, are endorsed by SAMHSA and are widely used in other countries outside the U.S., especially in Europe. Audrey’s personal tragedy has nothing whatsoever to do with the importance of her contribution. That she battled serious depression for many years is true. That she found herself unable to moderate her own drinking, especially when in the throes of her depressive darkness is also true. Nonetheless, the organization she founded has helped, and continues to help, thousands of problem drinkers. Science-deniers, such as robddolgin who comment just precedes this one, are no different than those who deny the Holocaust or global climate change. They operate with their heads in the sand, with egos so large that they believe they have all the answers for everyone who has a drinking problem–“do it my way!” Audrey saw clearly, and the principles of MM reflect this vision (as do the basic ideas behind AA–read The Big Book to see how Bill W. conceived of the best way to help people change) and the reality that individuals are always the ultimate decision-makers in their own lives, and the best way to promote healthy choices is to have them available. Moderate drinking approaches are one of these choices. That they are not made widely available to problem drinkers in the U.S. is a travesty, but one that Audrey sought to remedy in one small way. She will be missed both as a pioneer in assisting problem drinkers and as a human being with all the flaws that we all share.
Of course, he is just parroting Big Book propaganda and copying their brainwashing tactics to discredit detractors. Amazingly, anyone who says that addiction isn’t really a disease is called a ‘Holocaust denier’ and ‘science-denier’ and has a ‘large ego’ and is ‘trying to do it your own way’. These are all well-known 12 Step cult debating tactics.
Also he completely fails to address the reason why Kishline went driving even when she knew she was drunk. The idea that she wasn’t aware because of her blackout is BB propaganda. As Bill W said, “There had been no real infidelity, for loyalty to my wife, helped at times by extreme drunkenness, kept me out of those scrapes.” (p.3) This is of course a well known lie. But Rotgers promotes the idea that once drunk you are no longer responsible for your behavior either because you are unaware or lack judgment. This is axiomatic in AA. Of course Kishline had long experience with drunkenness to know that she was dangerous behind the wheel. And yet she drove anyway. Why? Probably because she was trying to get some kind of revenge on her father. This could be easily corroborated by anyone who knows her family. It is very typical of most stories of female alcoholism – usually an attempt to get their mother to ‘love’ them, though most heterosexual women outgrow such childishness by their mid 20’s.
This passage from the Big Book is recited at the start of every meeting:
Most of us have been unwilling to admit we were real alcoholics. No person likes to think he is bodily and mentally different from his fellows. Therefore, it is not surprising that our drinking careers have been characterized by countless vain attempts to prove we could drink like other people. The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death. We learned that we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that we were alcoholics. This is the first step in recovery. The delusion that we are like other people, or presently may be, has to be smashed.
The idea that alcohol makes us do things we later regret is a religious belief: idolatry of ‘King Alcohol’. It is not a scientific belief, despite government scientists’ heroic attempts to make it so. SAMHSA promotes that belief to children under a pseudoscience guise: “Don’t drink because it will make you do things you’ll later regret.” NIAAA and NIDA similarly promote pseudoscience nonsense to convince the public that addiction is real, ironically and hypocritically calling their critics ‘science deniers’ even though their own claims about the ‘neuroscience of addiction’ are pure conjecture and speculation.
Like AA, he dismisses his critics as having their ‘head in the sand’ — “Belligerent denial” (BB p. 568) and suffering from ‘large egos’ — “Our actor is self-centered — egocentric.” (BB p. 61) This causes the resentments that power the cravings. “And with us, to drink is to die.” (p. 66) The only solution is a spiritual cure: “We trust infinite God rather than our finite selves.” (p. 68) Rotgers is promoting AA suicide cult doctrine to disarm his critics, a tactic that has worked for AA for decades. They say either, “If you criticize AA you are going to die.” Or, “If you criticize AA you are killing suffering alcoholics.” (Whichever they think will be more effective at silencing you.) These tactics are the envy of islamist extremists!
Rotgers ascends to new heights of hypocrisy when he validates Bill Wilson’s notions of ‘the best way to help people change’. Of course, Wilson promoted AA as the only way (“Rarely have we seen a person fail”), while Rotgers scorns others as claiming exactly that. What makes Wilson so special in Rotgers’ eyes? Why does Rotgers refer to him reverently as ‘Bill W.’?
The truth is that AA and all its front groups like MM are the true science deniers. AA is killing millions through its deadly brainwashing propaganda, and Rotgers’ greatest hypocrisy is his own denial of the AA Holocaust he helps perpetrate.
Tom Horvath of SMART and other promoters of ‘alternative treatment options’ are similarly just front men for AA propaganda. The goal is to provide softer introductions to AA’s religious pagan/satanic doctrines which provide a convenient pipeline to the 12 Step drinking club suicide cult of powerlessness.
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- AA Has Killed Millions!
- A Thomas McLellan – Acclaimed Higher Power of Addiction Science
- Project ‘Emancipation Proclamation’ – A progress report
- Because Addiction – ‘Addiction’, Overdose and Suicide
- Alcoholism: The Lie Becomes the Truth
- SAMHSA’s New Blood Drive
- The Origin of Sin – We once lived in the Garden
- AA’s Satanic Roots – Have a drink and do what thou wilt
- Lie Like the Wind – How to know if AA is right for you
- How to Drink Like a Normal Man – Just keep it simple
- Powerlessness as Religion – Only the good die young
- You Are So Brainwashed It’s Funny – Who will pay for their sins?
- The Problem of the Jews: a Lesson in Brainwashing Propaganda – How AA bamboozled a country
- The Drinking Club – Watch what they do, not what they say
- Does Addiction Take Away Free Will? – We lived in the Garden
- Cory Monteith: The Cult of Powerlessness Claims Another Victim
- I Call Blackout – I did what??
- Rat Addicts and the Science Of Addiction – The best of 60′s Science Fiction
- A Conversation with Dr. Drew Pinsky – 13% and proud
- School for Scoundrels – What you actually learn in the rooms
- AA is a Pagan Cult – Putting the ‘pagan’ in propaganda
- The Little Psychopath Could: How the Addiction Myth creates new Drug Addicts