In Defense of Neil Brick, Psychotherapist

by  —  November 7, 2010
The summons were packed into the mailbox of a previous address — two residencies ago, in fact — on a Wednesday afternoon.  The hearing was to be on Monday.  It was only happenstance that I found out that the organizer of S.M.A.R.T. (Stop Mind-control And Ritual-abuse Today), Neil Brick, was trying to sue me at all.
As the paperwork, aside from being grossly improperly served, was also dated a couple of weeks previous to its delivery, this seemed like a rather underhanded attempt to avoid my replying to the suit.  When I eventually had the opportunity to read over the summons, I could see why this may have been the tactic.
The case was weak.  In fact, it was non-existent.
“Defamation” was the claim, and many quotes of mine were pulled from internet sources in an attempt to support it.  Even quotes that are not mine at all were included in the summons, though Brick and his lawyer apparently felt confident enough in their origin to attribute them to me.  Among these quotes are comments that are no longer online at all!  As for the quotes that were written by me… I stand by them, they are founded in fact, and they certainly don’t constitute defamation.
Ironically, this all stemmed from a report I wrote about one of Brick’s conferences where I heard him deliver a speech in which he encouraged vigorous debate with skeptics against his position.  It was his own failure to successfully do just that which caused him to seek legal remediation — an injunction to prevent my writing my writing about him or his organization — instead.
Here’s how it went:
Having entered the hotel slightly after the opening speaker of S.M.A.R.T.’s twelfth annual Ritual Abuse, Secretive Organizations, and Mind-Control conference began, I was told by a large woman sitting behind the registration table that I would have to wait until I could be properly registered before entering.  I took a seat just outside the open door of the conference room where I could observe the full proceedings within.  Brick stood at the podium.  As I described him later in my subsequent “defamatory” report, he is a “small man in his 50s with a greasy dark curly comb-over, large thick glasses, and a voice that sounds exacly like Elmer Fudd (without the impediment of pronouncing his Rs as Ws).”
He was delivering the opening remarks.  He was wearing a button-up shirt at least two sizes too large for his diminutive frame.  Reading directly from his notes in a mechanical word-by-word monotone, without once looking up, he emotionlessly railed against skeptics who have sought to discredit ritual abuse as well as the validity of “recovered memories”.
“There is overwhelming scientific evidence that recovered memory exists as a phenomenon”, he asserted.  He began to quote at length from sources that agree with this position.
A belief in the historical accuracy of recovered memories, as I had already discerned from their website, is vital to S.M.A.R.T.’s belief in a conspiracy of satanic cults and government mind-control.  The theory espoused by recovered memory proponents (and well known in popular culture), is that traumatic memories of abuse may be repressed – relegated to some dark corner of the mind – where they unfailingly metastasize into some type of chronic negative emotions, compulsions, confusion, even physical ailments.  Preserved in high-definition, and unerring detail, these oppressive unconscious memories must be drawn out, retrieved, relived, confronted, and reconciled within the conscious mind, before the victim can lead a happy and productive life.
Almost all of the self-proclaimed victims of Satanic Ritual Abuse have recovered their memories of victimization while undergoing some type of psychotherapy.  For the most part, these memories are the only type of “evidence” they attempt to present in support of the claim that such victimization ever occurred.
The process of digging for repressed traumatic memories through hypnosis or other techniques is most often employed in treatment of the diagnosis of Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD), now re-labeled as Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM).  Due to their almost total reliance upon recovered memory evidence, purveyors of satanic cult stories are often also defenders of the controversial multiple personality diagnosis, a condition that itself is dismissed by some psychiatrists and psychologists as a “behavioral artifact… generated by suggestion in vulnerable people.” (See below: Concerned Psychiatrists’ and Psychologists’ letter to the APA’s DSM-V Task Force.)
Critics of Recovered Memory Therapy point out that the act of digging for memories assumed to be repressed can have a subtly coercive effect on clients who – knowing what they are supposed to be “remembering” – are at least as prone to confabulating false memories as they are to recalling anything with historical accuracy.  Given that such critics of recovered memory therapy often point directly to highly improbable claims of satanic cult abuse as evidence of false memories, it was no surprise that Neil Brick breezily dismissed skeptics as conspirators: “There is [...] a lot of evidence that those attacking the theory of recovered memory may have ulterior motives.  For example, they may have been accused of child abuse crimes or may have been connected to mind control research in the past.”
Using “child abuse” interchangeably with “ritual abuse”, Brick attempted to further bolster a position that those who doubt the existence of an international brain-washing coven simply despise tykes: “The media turned on child abuse survivors in the early and mid 1990′s and began to in essence support those that has [sic] perpetrated crimes against children, believing unfounded stories about so called ‘miscarriages of justice.’ Due to the extreme nature of ritual abuse crimes and the psychological need for the public denial of these crimes, it became an easy sell to spin these crimes against children for the public to believe the misstatements about falsely accused perpetrators. After ritual abuse was discredited, then other child abuse crimes could be more easily discredited.”
There you have it.  You’re either with Neil Brick, or you’re with the Satanists.  You either believe every outrageous claim of demonic doings, or you’re part of the cover-up.  At best, you’re simply in “denial”.
Suddenly, the woman at the registration table, who had also been watching Neil Brick through the open door, began to lightly sob.  She grabbed a nearby tissue, dried her eyes, and blew her nose.
I stared uncomfortably down at the program in my hands.  I came looking for the reasons, the so-called evidence that compels this continued belief in satanic cult crimes… of mind control… to see the self-proclaimed byproducts of the brutal puppet masters said to control the highest reaches of the world governments with an inhuman disdain for life and liberty.  Instead – with scheduled lectures entitled “Dissociation and Time Management” and “The DID RA [Ritual Abuse] Family: An Attachment Perspective on a Forensic Relationship” – this conference appeared to be primarily adapted toward defending the DID diagnosis.
According to his biographical synopsis on the program, Neil Brick describes himself as a “survivor of alleged Masonic Ritual Abuse and MK-ULTRA [the CIA's covert mind-control and chemical interrogation project of 1950s - 60s]“.  The disclaimer of the word “alleged” in his own biographical description is perplexing…
I mulled over this as Brick eventually concluded his labored lecture.  What did it mean?
Brick comes out to the registration table during the break following his presentation gripping a briefcase.  He scrutinized me momentarily.
I checked out.  Given the nod, my attendance was then officially approved.
I stationed myself anonymously in the second to last occupied row at the far left side of the room.
Never, it occurred to me, have I heard anybody describe oneself as an “alleged victim of a mugging”, nor would I expect one to tell me, “I was allegedly harassed by a drunkard last night”.  Considering this, I wondered if perhaps Neil Brick himself is uncertain as to whether or not he was a victim of the CIA or Masonic abuse.  In fact, despite a veneer of confident assurance that the satanic conspiracy is an unquestionable item of fact, the conference was rife with inconsistency and an undercurrent of doubt…
Anyway, it was the inconsistent, and wildly incredible, content of the conference that I focused on in my writing.  And this was no mere point-and-laugh tactic for the amusement of those who cultivate an air of superiority with smug disbelief toward any outside notion.  The conference wasn’t merely absurd, I saw it as harmful and exploitative to the attendees — many of whom seemed to imagine it as therapeutic — as well as some of the speakers… some of whom are unfortunately licensed therapists.
It is natural to laugh at absurdity.  It would have been difficult to write about the sales booth within the conference room hawking electromagnetic transmission blocking hats without sounding humorous.  But I was outright horrified when a 78 year-old woman, who referred to herself as Julaine, sat before the attendees — unable to stand for any extended time — to explain that she had suffered some type of negative diabetic reaction earlier that day, and that her rheumatoid arthritis was causing her no small amount of discomfort.  She attributed both of these conditions to a conspiracy of evil.  Rheumatoid arthritis and Satanic Ritual Abuse, Julaine posited, are “almost partners”.
Clearly, this woman needed real medical attention.  To allow her to delude herself — or worse, actively feed her the delusion — that her ill health is a side-effect, and evidence of, satanic conspiracy is beyond irresponsible.  Worse, these delusions have apparently encouraged the aged and infirm Julaine to sever ties with the family members who may have been most willing to help her now… You see, Julaine’s family, she believes, is a multi-generational satanic cult.  “My sister thinks I’m bi-polar”, she explained.  This, of course, is seen as mere denial.  “She is lost”.
That Julaine is highly impressionable seemed apparent at the conference, but it was after the conference that this became quite clear.
I was perusing the website of another speaker, deJoly LaBrier, when I came across the transcripts of a lecture she had given at a much earlier S.M.A.R.T. gathering.  In it, she told a familiar tale: “[My father] would draw a dot on the wall, and [my siblings and I] would stand at attention with our nose on the dot on the wall, until he told us that we could leave.”
I clearly remembered hearing the story at the conference I had attended, for it struck me as odd… Rotten though this nose-to-the-wall experience would be for any child, I couldn’t help but feel such punishments would be quite over-shadowed by the compulsory initiation into sadistic cult rituals and child prostitution that the LaBrier claimed had also taken place… So much so that being made to stand in a fixed position felt rather unworthy of mention.
But it wasn’t LaBrier who told this tale at the 2009 conference.  It was Julaine.
Had it occurred to Neil Brick (who is a licensed and practicing “Mental Health Counselor” in Massachusetts), or any other attending therapist, that Julaine may not in fact have been victim to “Moriah, Illuminati… whatever you want to call it” (as she referred to “Them” in her lecture), but rather an incredibly suggestible and vulnerable old woman who has difficulty distinguishing stories she has heard from her own autobiographical memory?
Apparently not.
To allow any such questions to encroach on any one of the delusive narratives told would cast doubt on them all… and they all had their own ludicrous tales defend with nothing more than shallow assertions of recovered memory accuracy.
For this reason, not even the most impossible of claims were met with so much as a raised eye-brow or embarrassed cough.  Nobody showed a hint of doubt when a speaker going by the name of “Royal”, at all of about forty years of age, stood before us to claim that she was a personal slave to nazi doctor Josef Mengele.  “My experience with Mengele”, Royal explained in a lecture (the gist of which was that Satan uses abortion as a means of traumatic mind-control), “involved much of the trauma-based mind control involving core programming (such as End-Time programming) that is connected to the global take over. He used the Psychic/Spiritual dimensions using, what I have come to call ‘demonic harmonics’, which involves using musical tones and quantum physics to open up portals into the spiritual realms. I also have core programs set up that were created using abortions as a means to develop them and more.”
Despite all this, Neil Brick imagines that my use of the words “paranoid”, and “delusional” are vicious defamations.  Further, in his affidavit attached to the summons, Neil Brick states: “His actions have caused me a loss in business, as it appears our conference attendance will be much lower this year due to attendees being afraid someone like him may infiltrate the conference again.”  On this, as with everything else, the suggestion that I might even owe an apology is obscene.  Take the consumer advocacy view: If I’ve shown the product to be faulty, I owe nothing in compensation for a loss in sales.
Following the publication of the report, Brick went all to pieces, leaving angry comments, penning a “rebuttal”.  Oddly enough though, none of his objections confronted my outrage at the absurdity of the very conspiracy theory that underlies the entire narrative framework of the conference, and of S.M.A.R.T., itself.  Though claiming I misrepresented the entire affair, he failed to explain how.  He failed to answer any questions regarding his own experiences as an “alleged” victim of “Masonic Ritual Abuse and MK-ULTRA”.  He failed to answer any questions directly aimed at elaboration upon his belief in a massive satanic conspiracy.  He failed to confront any questions regarding the content of the conference to instead assert, again and again, supported with lists of journal article citations supporting the view, that recovered memories are real phenomenon.
This made it incomprehensible that Neil Brick would actually ask to take this court, where he might have no choice but to face those very questions.  Interesting, I thought… Even if I weren’t being summoned, I’d want to watch this court-room comedy.
Alas, it was not to be.  Whether they experienced a moment-of-clarity, or the whole thing had been a mis-guided and ineffective measure meant to spook me away, neither Neil Brick nor his lawyer actually showed up to the hearing.  Neither did I, for that matter (as I wasn’t actually legally summoned).  But my lawyer did.
The case, not surprisingly, was dismissed, but my lawyer was heard anyway.  The Judge, I am told, was nonplussed by the Plaintiff’s actions.
I’m nonplussed, too.  But there was, it turns out, one item in Neil Brick’s affidavit that, if true, moves me to outrage on his behalf.  He claims that: “To the best of my knowledge, everyone in my field knows about [Douglas Mesner’s] attacks against me and many have avoided contact with me due to the fear that he will attack them also, as he has done to several already.”
If by “attack” he means “directly confront them with their own incredible narratives, question their defense of such narratives when told by others, while asking clarification on where the demarcation between recovered memories and delusions can be found (unless we are to unquestioningly accept all stories of satanic conspiracy, alien abduction, and past-life regression)”, then this fear is well-founded.  But if these people, this “everyone”, within Brick’s “field” agree with his notions of Satanic Ritual Abuse and Mind-Control, and if they feel that this is a position that is evidence-based and rational, then my scrutiny should not be an object of fear.  It should be welcomed, and the answers to any such questions should be forthcoming.  If instead, they choose to distance themselves from Neil Brick only to conceal a position that is not supported by evidence, can not be justified by facts, only so that they may hide their delusions behind the professional veneer afforded to repressed memory theory by way of poor retrospective surveys and bad data… then they are a craven lot indeed, and would be fully deserving of Neil Brick’s scorn…
If only he’d acted any differently himself…

The summons was packed into the mailbox of a previous address — two residencies ago, in fact — on a Wednesday afternoon. The hearing was to be on Monday. It was only happenstance that I found out that the organizer of S.M.A.R.T. (Stop Mind-control And Ritual-abuse Today), Neil Brick, was trying to sue me at all.

As the paperwork, aside from being grossly improperly served, was also dated a couple of weeks previous to its delivery, this seemed like a rather underhanded attempt to avoid my replying to the suit. When I eventually had the opportunity to read over the summons, I could see why this may have been the tactic.

The case was weak. In fact, it was non-existent.

“Defamation” was the claim, and many quotes of mine were pulled from internet sources in an attempt to support it. Even quotes that are not mine at all were included in the summons, though Brick and his lawyer apparently felt confident enough in their origin to attribute them to me. Among these quotes are comments that are no longer online at all! As for the quotes that were written by me… I stand by them, they are founded in fact, and they certainly don’t constitute defamation.

Ironically, this all stemmed from a report I wrote about one of Brick’s conferences where I heard him deliver a speech in which he encouraged vigorous debate with skeptics against his position. It was his own failure to successfully do just that which caused him to seek legal remediation — an injunction to prevent my writing my writing about him or his organization — instead.

Here’s how it went:

Having entered the hotel slightly after the opening speaker of S.M.A.R.T.’s twelfth annual Ritual Abuse, Secretive Organizations, and Mind-Control conference began, I was told by a large woman sitting behind the registration table that I would have to wait until I could be properly registered before entering. I took a seat just outside the open door of the conference room where I could observe the full proceedings within. Brick stood at the podium. As I described him later in my subsequent “defamatory” report, he is a “small man in his 50s with a greasy dark curly comb-over, large thick glasses, and a voice that sounds exacly like Elmer Fudd (without the impediment of pronouncing his Rs as Ws).”

He was delivering the opening remarks. He was wearing a button-up shirt at least two sizes too large for his diminutive frame.  (This physical description is important when you consider his claim to have been a type of super-soldier for Black Ops military.)  Reading directly from his notes in a mechanical word-by-word monotone, without once looking up, he emotionlessly railed against skeptics who have sought to discredit ritual abuse as well as the validity of “recovered memories”.

“There is overwhelming scientific evidence that recovered memory exists as a phenomenon”, he asserted. He began to quote at length from sources that agree with this position.

A belief in the historical accuracy of recovered memories, as I had already discerned from their website, is vital to S.M.A.R.T.’s belief in a conspiracy of satanic cults and government mind-control. The theory espoused by recovered memory proponents (and well known in popular culture), is that traumatic memories of abuse may be repressed – relegated to some dark corner of the mind – where they unfailingly metastasize into some type of chronic negative emotions, compulsions, confusion, even physical ailments. Preserved in high-definition, and unerring detail, these oppressive unconscious memories must be drawn out, retrieved, relived, confronted, and reconciled within the conscious mind, before the victim can lead a happy and productive life.

Almost all of the self-proclaimed victims of Satanic Ritual Abuse have recovered their memories of victimization while undergoing some type of psychotherapy. For the most part, these memories are the only type of “evidence” they attempt to present in support of the claim that such victimization ever occurred.

The process of digging for repressed traumatic memories through hypnosis or other techniques is most often employed in treatment of the diagnosis of Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD), now re-labeled as Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM). Due to their almost total reliance upon recovered memory evidence, purveyors of satanic cult stories are often also defenders of the controversial multiple personality diagnosis, a condition that itself is dismissed by some psychiatrists and psychologists as a “behavioral artifact… generated by suggestion in vulnerable people.” (See below: Concerned Psychiatrists’ and Psychologists’ letter to the APA’s DSM-V Task Force.)

Critics of Recovered Memory Therapy point out that the act of digging for memories assumed to be repressed can have a subtly coercive effect on clients who – knowing what they are supposed to be “remembering” – are at least as prone to confabulating false memories as they are to recalling anything with historical accuracy. Given that such critics of recovered memory therapy often point directly to highly improbable claims of satanic cult abuse as evidence of false memories, it was no surprise that Neil Brick breezily dismissed skeptics as conspirators: “There is [...] a lot of evidence that those attacking the theory of recovered memory may have ulterior motives. For example, they may have been accused of child abuse crimes or may have been connected to mind control research in the past.”

Using “child abuse” interchangeably with “ritual abuse”, Brick attempted to further bolster a position that those who doubt the existence of an international brain-washing coven simply despise tykes: “The media turned on child abuse survivors in the early and mid 1990′s and began to in essence support those that has [sic] perpetrated crimes against children, believing unfounded stories about so called ‘miscarriages of justice.’ Due to the extreme nature of ritual abuse crimes and the psychological need for the public denial of these crimes, it became an easy sell to spin these crimes against children for the public to believe the misstatements about falsely accused perpetrators. After ritual abuse was discredited, then other child abuse crimes could be more easily discredited.”

There you have it. You’re either with Neil Brick, or you’re with the Satanists. You either believe every outrageous claim of demonic doings, or you’re part of the cover-up. At best, you’re simply in “denial”.

Suddenly, the woman at the registration table, who had also been watching Neil Brick through the open door, began to lightly sob. She grabbed a nearby tissue, dried her eyes, and blew her nose.

I stared uncomfortably down at the program in my hands. I came looking for the reasons, the so-called evidence that compels this continued belief in satanic cult crimes… of mind control… to see the self-proclaimed byproducts of the brutal puppet masters said to control the highest reaches of the world governments with an inhuman disdain for life and liberty. Instead – with scheduled lectures entitled “Dissociation and Time Management” and “The DID RA [Ritual Abuse] Family: An Attachment Perspective on a Forensic Relationship” – this conference appeared to be primarily adapted toward defending the DID diagnosis.

According to his biographical synopsis on the program, Neil Brick describes himself as a “survivor of alleged Masonic Ritual Abuse and MK-ULTRA [the CIA's covert mind-control and chemical interrogation project of 1950s - 60s]“. The disclaimer of the word “alleged” in his own biographical description is perplexing…

I mulled over this as Brick eventually concluded his labored lecture. What did it mean?

Brick came out to the registration table during the break following his presentation gripping a briefcase. He scrutinized me momentarily.

I checked out. Given the nod, my attendance was then officially approved.

I stationed myself anonymously in the second to last occupied row at the far left side of the room.

Never, it occurred to me, have I heard anybody describe oneself as an “alleged victim of a mugging”, nor would I expect one to tell me, “I was allegedly harassed by a drunkard last night”. Considering this, I wondered if perhaps Neil Brick himself is uncertain as to whether or not he was a victim of the CIA or Masonic abuse. In fact, despite a veneer of confident assurance that the satanic conspiracy is an unquestionable item of fact, the conference was rife with inconsistency and an undercurrent of doubt…

Anyway, it was the inconsistent, and wildly incredible, content of the conference that I focused on in my writing. And this was no mere point-and-laugh tactic for the amusement of those who cultivate an air of superiority with smug disbelief toward any outside notion. The conference wasn’t merely absurd, I saw it as harmful and exploitative to the attendees — many of whom seemed to imagine it as therapeutic — as well as some of the speakers… some of whom are unfortunately licensed therapists.

It is natural to laugh at absurdity. It would have been difficult to write about the sales booth within the conference room hawking electromagnetic transmission blocking hats without sounding humorous. But I was outright horrified when a 78 year-old woman, who referred to herself as Julaine, sat before the attendees — unable to stand for any extended time — to explain that she had suffered some type of negative diabetic reaction earlier that day, and that her rheumatoid arthritis was causing her no small amount of discomfort. She attributed both of these conditions to a conspiracy of evil. Rheumatoid arthritis and Satanic Ritual Abuse, Julaine posited, are “almost partners”.

Clearly, this woman needed real medical attention. To allow her to delude herself — or worse, actively feed her the delusion — that her ill health is a side-effect, and evidence of, satanic conspiracy is beyond irresponsible. Worse, these delusions have apparently encouraged the aged and infirm Julaine to sever ties with the family members who may have been most willing to help her now… You see, Julaine’s family, she believes, is a multi-generational satanic cult. “My sister thinks I’m bi-polar”, she explained. This, of course, is seen as mere denial. “She is lost”.

That Julaine is highly impressionable seemed apparent at the conference, but it was after the conference that this became quite clear.

I was perusing the website of another speaker, deJoly LaBrier, when I came across the transcripts of a lecture she had given at a much earlier S.M.A.R.T. gathering. In it, she told a familiar tale: “[My father] would draw a dot on the wall, and [my siblings and I] would stand at attention with our nose on the dot on the wall, until he told us that we could leave.”

I clearly remembered hearing the story at the conference I had attended, for it struck me as odd… Rotten though this nose-to-the-wall experience would be for any child, I couldn’t help but feel such punishments would be quite over-shadowed by the compulsory initiation into sadistic cult rituals and child prostitution that LaBrier claimed had also taken place… So much so that being made to stand in a fixed position felt rather unworthy of mention.

But it wasn’t LaBrier who told this tale at the 2009 conference. It was Julaine.

Had it occurred to Neil Brick (who is a licensed and practicing “Mental Health Counselor” in Massachusetts), or any other attending therapist, that Julaine may not in fact have been victim to “Moriah, Illuminati… whatever you want to call it” (as she referred to “Them” in her lecture), but rather an incredibly suggestible and vulnerable old woman who has difficulty distinguishing stories she has heard from her own autobiographical memory?

Apparently not.

To allow any such questions to encroach on any one of the delusive narratives told would cast doubt on them all… and they all had their own ludicrous tales to defend with nothing more than shallow assertions of recovered memory accuracy.

For this reason, not even the most impossible of claims were met with so much as a raised eye-brow or embarrassed cough. Nobody showed a hint of doubt when a speaker going by the name of “Royal”, at all of about forty years of age, stood before us to claim that she was a personal slave to nazi doctor Josef Mengele. “My experience with Mengele”, Royal explained in a lecture (the gist of which was that Satan uses abortion as a means of traumatic mind-control), “involved much of the trauma-based mind control involving core programming (such as End-Time programming) that is connected to the global take over. He used the Psychic/Spiritual dimensions using, what I have come to call ‘demonic harmonics’, which involves using musical tones and quantum physics to open up portals into the spiritual realms. I also have core programs set up that were created using abortions as a means to develop them and more.”

Despite all this, Neil Brick imagines that my use of the words “paranoid”, and “delusional” are vicious defamations. Further, in his affidavit attached to the summons, Neil Brick states: “His actions have caused me a loss in business, as it appears our conference attendance will be much lower this year due to attendees being afraid someone like him may infiltrate the conference again.” On this, as with everything else, the suggestion that I might even owe an apology is obscene. Take the consumer advocacy view: If I’ve shown the product to be faulty, I owe nothing in compensation for a loss in sales.

Following the publication of the report, Brick went all to pieces, leaving angry comments, penning a “rebuttal”. Oddly enough though, none of his objections confronted my outrage at the absurdity of the very conspiracy theory that underlies the entire narrative framework of the conference, and of S.M.A.R.T., itself. Though claiming I misrepresented the entire affair, he failed to explain how. He failed to answer any questions regarding his own experiences as an “alleged” victim of “Masonic Ritual Abuse and MK-ULTRA”. He failed to answer any questions directly aimed at elaboration upon his belief in a massive satanic conspiracy. He failed to confront any questions regarding the content of the conference to instead assert, again and again, supported with lists of journal article citations supporting the view, that recovered memories are a real phenomenon.

This made it incomprehensible that Neil Brick would actually ask to take this court, where he might have no choice but to face those very questions.

Interesting, I thought… Even if I weren’t being summoned, I’d want to watch this court-room comedy.

Alas, it was not to be. Whether they experienced a moment-of-clarity, or the whole thing had been a mis-guided and ineffective measure meant to spook me away, neither Neil Brick nor his lawyer actually showed up to the hearing. Neither did I, for that matter (as I wasn’t actually legally summoned). But my lawyer did.

The case, not surprisingly, was dismissed, but my lawyer was heard anyway. The Judge, I am told, was nonplussed by the Plaintiff’s actions.

I’m nonplussed, too. But there was, it turns out, one item in Neil Brick’s affidavit that, if true, moves me to outrage on his behalf. He claims that: “To the best of my knowledge, everyone in my field knows about [Douglas Mesner’s] attacks against me and many have avoided contact with me due to the fear that he will attack them also, as he has done to several already.”

If by “attack” he means “directly confront them with their own incredible narratives, question their defense of such narratives when told by others, while asking clarification on where the demarcation between recovered memories and delusions can be found (unless we are to unquestioningly accept all stories of satanic conspiracy, alien abduction, and past-life regression)”, then this fear is well-founded. But if these people, this “everyone”, within Brick’s “field” agree with his notions of Satanic Ritual Abuse and Mind-Control, and if they feel that this is a position that is evidence-based and rational, then my scrutiny should not be an object of fear. It should be welcomed, and the answers to any such questions should be forthcoming. If instead, they choose to distance themselves from Neil Brick only to conceal a position that is not supported by evidence, can not be justified by facts, only so that they may hide their delusions behind the professional veneer afforded to repressed memory theory by way of poor retrospective surveys and bad data… then they are a craven lot indeed, and would be fully deserving of Neil Brick’s scorn…

If only he’d acted any differently himself…

* * * * * * * * *

Concerned Psychiatrists and Psychologists Letter to the DSM-V Committee

A Group of Concerned Psychiatrists and Psychologists

c/o Dr. Paul McHugh, MD

Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry

Johns Hopkins University

April 11, 2009

Dr. David J. Kupfer, MD

Chair of DSM-V Committee,

Dr. Thomas Detre Professor and Chair, Department of Psychiatry

Professor of Neuroscience, Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic

5811 O’Hara Street

Pittsburgh, PA 15215

RE: Dissociative Identity Disorder and DSM-V

Dear Dr. Kupfer:

We are writing to you to express concern with respect to the continuation of Dissociative Identity Disorder as an approved diagnosis within the forthcoming DSM-V. We believe that the identification of Multiple Personality Disorder, and later its name change as Dissociative Identity Disorder, has been harmful to the good sense and reputation of psychiatry, not to mention the cause of grave ill-effects to large numbers of patients and their families. In the attached document we maintain that the diagnosis should be removed from DSM-V and we provide the basis for our request. If either the Task Force or Council is unable to agree on removing DID completely from the 5th Edition we suggest that at the very least it should be placed in Appendix B as an experimental criterion set requiring further investigation.

Respectfully,

Signatories

(Please see Appendix A)

Attachments

To: DSM-V Task Force &

Work Group on Anxiety, Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum,

Posttraumatic & Dissociative Disorders

Statement on:

The need to remove Dissociative Identity Disorder from DSM-V or place it in Appendix B

The evidence supporting this diagnosis as a distinct mental disorder is modest whereas much suggests it to be a behavioral artifact equivalent in nature to pseudo-epilepsy generated by suggestion in vulnerable people. Its identification as a special, separate diagnostic entity in DSM has harmed the practice of psychiatry and undermined its scientific credibility. Although it is important for us to provide evidence to support these statements, we wish to avoid excessive detail, given that such evidence has been documented widely in the published literature.

Origins

The notion of dual personalities was founded upon cases of bipolar illness (1) and was followed by the idea of extra personalities. This expansion first occurred with the hypnotically-induced introduction of a second personality and the deliberate naming of those personalities as if they were separate entities (1).

Prevalence

Taylor and Martin (2) recognized a total of 76 cases occurring between 1816 and 1944—slightly more than one every two years; they thought a similar number might be unreported. In 1954 Thigpen and Cleckley (3) reported their case, which was published as “The Three Faces of Eve” in 1957. After a film was made of this case, the numbers of reported cases increased steadily; there was a further dramatic leap after the film of “Sybil”. By 1990 thousands of cases were being diagnosed; some authors identified more cases in their personal practices than had been described in the literature over an entire century.

Twentieth Century Suggestion

As is well known, Sybil, a patient of Dr. Cornelia Wilbur, was fully aware that her therapist wanted her to create extra personalities (4). In 1973, Dr. Wilbur gave tape recordings of Sybil’s interviews to Schreiber [the journalist who reported Sybil as a case of multiple personality disorder (5)]. Schreiber made the recordings available to Ronald Rieber, a professor of psychology, who amassed evidence showing that at least some of the personalities were artifacts overtly created in treatment (6).

Etiology

Dissociative Identity Disorder is often alleged to result from repressing an experience of childhood sexual abuse. This claim has not received adequate scientific validation. For example, Piper and Merskey (7) reviewed all the studies that claimed to corroborate DID patients’ abuse recollections. These authors concluded that “no evidence supports the claim that DID patients as a group have actually experienced the traumas asserted by the disorder’s proponents” (7).

Proponents of the DID diagnosis assert that horrific, repeated childhood physical and sexual abuse is the primary cause of DID. Victims supposedly develop their multiple personalities as repositories for traumatic memories that the “host” personality is unable to tolerate consciously. The DID diagnosis thus relies on the concept of traumatic Dissociative Amnesia (DA or “repression”): the notion that the mind protects itself by banishing terrifying memories from awareness, rendering them inaccessible until the person feels psychologically safe to recall them, often years later. There is no convincing evidence that victims can become incapable of recalling genuinely traumatic experiences, as the trauma theory of DID requires (8). Indeed, an extensive survey of the historical literature, including both fictional and non-fictional written works in multiple languages, found no written example of “dissociative amnesia” prior to 1786 (9). Thus the notion of “repressing” a memory itself, like DID, appears to represent a recent culture-bound phenomenon, rather than a naturally occurring human psychological process.

In a comprehensive analysis of studies of people with documented trauma histories, not a single mention of spontaneous amnesia for the traumatic event was found—unless the forgetting was attributable to either organic amnesia or childhood amnesia (10). Finally, an examination of Freud’s original work gives reason to think that the evidence from psychoanalysis for repression is also very unsatisfactory (11, 12).

Harmful Effects

Due to the assumption that trauma is a primary etiological factor, the DID diagnosis has resulted in wrongful accusations of sexual abuse on the basis of recovered memories, not only in North America but throughout the developed world (references). DID has caused mockery of psychiatry, and, for patients, has led to misdiagnosis (13), mismanagement (14) and inadequate treatment of depression (15).

Lack of Consensus

Canadian and American psychiatrists show little consensus regarding the diagnostic status and scientific validity of DID. In surveys of board-certified psychiatrists in the United States (16) and Canada (17) fewer than one-third of Canadian psychiatrists and 35% of American psychiatrists replied that DA & DID should be included without reservations in the DSM-IV; fewer than 1 in 7 Canadian psychiatrists and only 21-23% of American psychiatrists replied that there was “strong evidence of validity” for these disorders. French- and English-speaking Canadians had similar opinions.

Conclusions

There are overwhelming reasons to question the validity of Dissociative Identity Disorder. We respectfully urge you as members of the Work Group and the Task Force to drop the category of dissociative disorders from the upcoming DSM-V: it is harmful to patients and their families, scientifically unjustified, and undermining the credibility of psychiatry.

Signatories

Please see Appendix A.

REFERENCES

1. Merskey, H. (1992a). The manufacture of personalities. The production of multiple personality disorder. Brit. J. Psychiat., 160:327-340.

2. Taylor W.F. & Martin M.F. (1944) Multiple personality. J. Abnormal & Soc. Psychol., 39:281-330.

3. Thigpen, C.H. & Cleckley, H.M. (1957). The Three Faces of Eve. New York: McGraw-Hill.

4. Spiegel, H. (1993) Mistaken Identities: Toronto. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. The Fifth Estate, 9 November 1993.

5. Schreiber, F.R. (1973) Sybil. Chicago: Henry Regnery.

6. Rieber, R.W. (2006) The Bifurcation of the Self. The History and Theory of Dissociation and Its Disorders. New York: Springer Science.

7. Piper, A., Merskey, H., (2004). The persistence of folly: a critical examination of dissociative identity disorder. Part I. The excesses of an improbable concept. Can J Psychiatry 49 (9): 592-600.

8. McNally, R. J. (2003) Remembering Trauma. Belknap Press/Harvard University Press: Cambridge, MA.

9. Pope, H.G. Jr., Poliakoff, M.B., Parker, M.P., Boynes, M.D., & Hudson, J.I. (2007) Is dissociative amnesia a culture-bound syndrome? Findings from a survey of historical literature. Psychol. Med., 37(2):225-233.

10. Pope, H. G. Jr., Oliva, P., Hudson, J.I.: (2005) Repressed memories. The scientific status of research on repressed memories, in Modern Scientific Evidence: The Law and Science of Expert Testimony—Social and Behavioral Science, 2005-2006 Edition. Edited by Faigman D, Kaye D, Saks M, Sanders J. Eagen, MN, West Group, pp 408-447.

11. Esterson, A. (1993) Seductive Mirage. Open Court: Chicago.

12. Crews, F. (1998) Unauthorized Freud: Doubters Confront a Legend. New York: Viking.

13. Freeland, A., Manchanda, R., Chiu, S., et al. (1993) Four cases of supposed multiple personality disorder: evidence of unjustified diagnoses. Can. J. Psychiat., 23: 245-247.

14. McHugh, Paul R. (2008) Try to Remember: Psychiatry’s Clash over Meaning, Memory, and Mind. Chapters 4 &5. Dana Press.

15. Fetkewicz, J., Sharma, V. & Merskey, H. (2000) A note on suicidal deterioration with recovered memory, treatment. J. Affect. Dis., 58:155-159.

16. Pope, H.G., Jr., Oliva, P.S., Hudson, J.I., Bodkin, J.A. & Gruber, A.J. (1999) Attitudes toward DSM-IV Dissociative Disorders Diagnoses among Board-Certified American Psychiatrists. Am. J. Psychiat., 2000; 157:1179-1180.

17. Lalonde, J.K., Hudson, J.I., Gigante, R.A. & Pope, H.G. Jr. (2001) Canadian and American psychiatrists’ attitudes toward Dissociative Disorders diagnoses. Can. J. Psychiat., 46(5): 407-412.

Appendix A

List of Signatories

1. Paul R. McHugh, M.D. Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University.

2. Harrison Pope, Jr., MD, MPH, Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts; Director, Biological Psychiatry Laboratory, McLean Hospital, Belmont Massachusetts

3. James Hudson, MD, ScD, Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts; Director, Biological Psychiatry Laboratory, McLean Hospital, Belmont Massachusetts

4. Elizabeth Loftus, PhD, Distinguished Professor, University of California-Irvine.

5. Richard J. McNally, Ph.D., Professor and Director of Clinical Training, Department of Psychology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.

6. Harold Merskey, FRCPsych., Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario

7. Joel Paris, M.D. Professor of Psychiatry, McGill University, SMBD-Jewish General Hospital, Montreal, Quebec H3T1E4, Canada.

8. August Piper, M.D., Independent practice of psychiatry, Seattle, WA.

9. Numan Gharaibeh, MD (MB, BCh), Danbury, CT.

10. Pamela Freyd, Ph.D.

11. Eduard Vieta, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Psychiatry, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain.

12. Philip G. Janicak, MD, Professor of Psychiatry, Rush University, Chicago, Il.

13. Gerald M. Rosen, Ph.D., Private practice, Seattle, Clinical Professor, University of Washington.

14. Steven Jay Lynn, Ph.D., ABPP, Professor, Binghamton University (SUNY) Binghamton, NY.

15. Sally Satel, MD, resident scholar American Enterprise Institute; staff psychiatry Oasis Clinic, Washington DC; lecturer, Yale University School of Medicine.

16. James M. Wood, Ph.D. Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Texas at El Paso.

Marked as: Abnormal SociologyBuncoLawScience  —  41 comments   (RSS)

41 Comments so far
  1. jeanettebartha November 8, 2010 7:40 am

    Well, Doug. You’ve been mighty busy. I too, am interested in why Brick was “allegedly” abused. Perhaps he uses allegedly as his version of legal CYA in case sometime in the future, it comes to pass that he is wrong. I can’t, however, imagine that such a time could ever come.

    I must add that it should be a crime to file frivolous suits. It’s time for Neil Brick to pay your, and the courts, legal expenses. I hope you are seeking that. Small claims court would probably hear you.

  2. doug November 8, 2010 11:18 am

    i do find it ponderous that anybody could demand a hearing without even presenting credible evidence of the claim. some of the comments for which neil brick was claiming defamation were written on third party websites, weren’t attributed to me, referenced things that i’m either unaware of or are simply insensible, aren’t available online now, and don’t resemble my writing at all. in fact, i think that the only item from the report itself that was included in the summons was from my conclusion:
    “The conference is so self-evidently full of bullshit that exposing it may seem no more productive than pulling the false beard from a shopping mall Santa Claus.”
    i think it’s very informative that, despite his objections to my conference report, he had to comb the internet looking for statements he imagined as actionable and attributable to me. i’ll take this as testimony to the report’s accuracy…

  3. vindalf December 3, 2010 12:34 am

    This is an extremely revealing statement by Brick:
    “His actions have caused me a LOSS IN BUSINESS, as it appears our conference attendance will be much lower this year due to attendees being afraid someone like him may infiltrate the conference again.”

    So much for “we just want to help people”. It’s a for-profit “business”. Nice disclosure, Mr. Brick.

    It’s so ironic that Brick would attempt to sue you or anyone else for defamation, considering how he and the rest of his cult community continuously spew the most horrificly defamatory statements about many other persons. Sometimes, they seem to actually believe that the failure of their own victims to bother suing them must mean that their defamatory fantasies represent reality!

    The truth is, a COMPETENT lawyer would advise any defamation victim that – unless the falsehoods are actually making your life unliveable – it’s more prudent to ignore them than to take the person to court. This is detailed in:
    “How a conspiracy theorist who thought I was the Zodiac almost ruined my life” by Michael O’Hare

  4. vindalf December 9, 2010 3:53 am

    Hoorah for the “Group of Concerned Psychiatrists and Psychologists”:
    “We respectfully urge you as members of the Work Group and the Task Force to drop the category of dissociative disorders from the upcoming DSM-V: it is harmful to patients and their families, scientifically unjustified, and undermining the credibility of psychiatry”.

    I’m particularly alarmed by the concept of “trauma based mind control”, by which, its proponents claim, human identity and (multiple) personality can be meticulously “sculpted” via systematic torture of infants, toddlers and young children. Any professional publicly promoting this UTTERLY FALSE concept ought to be booted out of their profession at the very least. I’m fearful that deranged individuals or cult groups will be inspired by these ideas and attempt to “sculpt” their children in this manner. If that EVER happens, in reality, the proponents of this nonsense ought to be prosecuted for abuse alongside the abusers.

  5. doug December 10, 2010 3:52 pm

    i have, perhaps, a correction, and a few clarifications and updates. somebody emailed me claiming to have found that julaine is (or was), in fact, 68 years of age, not 78. i don’t have verification of this but, in any case, for whatever it’s worth, that number is in dispute.

    in my previous comment, i stated: “i think that the only item from the report itself that was included in the summons was from my conclusion:
    “The conference is so self-evidently full of bullshit that exposing it may seem no more productive than pulling the false beard from a shopping mall Santa Claus.”
    looking over the summons, i can confirm: that really IS the ONLY line from the actual report that is cited, so i guess there is a quantifiable precise definition of what constitutes “full of bullshit” that will be brought to inquiry.

    the case was dismissed without prejudice. this means that the preliminary injunction meant to prevent me from writing anything about S.M.A.R.T. or neil brick was denied. my understanding is that, to move forward, brick and his lawyer will have to re-file the suit. so, the case isn’t thrown out never to be heard again, but i have no idea of knowing if it will be pursued.

    in the post above, i describe neil brick as a “small man in his 50s with a greasy dark curly comb-over, large thick glasses, and a voice that sounds exacly like Elmer Fudd (without the impediment of pronouncing his Rs as Ws).”
    He was delivering the opening remarks. He was wearing a button-up shirt at least two sizes too large for his diminutive frame. (This physical description is important when you consider his claim to have been a type of super-soldier for Black Ops military.)”
    i have since been forwarded a transcript of one of neil brick’s previous S.M.A.R.T. conference presentations (2001) wherein he explains how it is that he could be both diminutive, yet also an illuminati thug:

    ” was very small and I was kept small and thin by programming until the age of 9, when a primary perpetrator went into the hospital for a while and I was no longer afraid to eat. This programming started around the age of 3. This is why I am so small today and I am smaller than my siblings. I was kept small to fit into vents and ducts to work on missions to go into places to open doors, to let others in, steal materials or records, spy on meetings or kill people. I have memories of internally going on missions (at least one as an adult in my 20′s), but am unsure if it was internally or externally, I was triggered by people having sex in the next room.”

    in the same lecture, in fact, he claims to have committed murder(!):
    “I have one memory of killing someone in Eastern Europe, it felt like that part of the world. He was sort of asleep and he knew this would happen, it must have been in the late 60′s by the way he looked. He was some sort of up and coming political person the CIA/Illuminati didn’t want in power. He knew it was his time though. He said (in his own language) go ahead and do it, or at least I perceived this. So I did it.”

    apparently, the “cia/illuminati” were — despite their means — able to make him forget all this by crude methods:

    “I was repeatedly raped in masonic/illuminati RA and thought the lab doctors, at least some did abuse me, I think sometimes outside of the experiments, touching me and stimulating me, though I have been anally raped to punish me or split me further.”

    (“split”, in this case, i assume, refers to a further splitting of his personalities, despite whatever your own intuitions might have been.)

    in the post above, i quoted a ridiculous spoken fantasy presented by one of brick’s speakers at the conference i attended, noting that “Despite all this, Neil Brick imagines that my use of the words “paranoid”, and “delusional” are vicious defamations.” the summons, i now see, note that i refer to neil brick specifically as paranoid and delusional, so a quote from him is more appropriate (this, again, from his very informative 2001 conference lecture):

    “Last summer, after the conference, we went to a restaurant. After dinner, all of a sudden I had a very strong abreaction. All at once I kind of felt like I’d had the wind knocked out of me, but it was much stronger. I felt like I knew I was Illuminati (or whatever) at the moment or at least gov’t and deep cult. I was very disorientated and after finding my car I was very scared and unable to find my way to the highway for quite a while. I realized that this was programming. I thought that the police or whoever were going to get me because I had remembered and even after finding the highway and getting home I was terrified and scared that I would be killed, that someone would break in or come and get me.
    I felt better the next day. I realized that this was part of the programming to get very disoriented, probably from spin programming and then the fear programming not to remember, because they would find me, get me or kill me.”

    when judging all of this material, it is only fair to point out that Neil Brick himself admits to suffering brain damage caused by electro-convulsive therapy. this may or may not be true, as it is worked into the narrative of illuminati mind-control antics (from his 2002 lecture):

    “I may walk into something or stub my toe or bang my head on something so that I can get the severe anger out by cursing loudly through a co-conscious but very angry cult or protector personality. I may curse or scream and bang things. I have worked through so much anger over the last 20 plus years, but there still seems to be so much in my mind from all the tortures and humiliations done to me. The clumsiness I have sometimes may also be due to some equilibrium problems I have due to the brain damage I have from ECT and other forms of torture and mind control.”

    in any case, the whole thing is so terribly bizarre, convoluted, and raving-ly absurd, that i’ve long since stopped trying to focus an answer on the question of motive…

  6. emmablue December 10, 2010 4:02 pm

    The only way he could win this would be to prove he really did kill someone, and therefore is not delusional. This is very bizarre. Can you get him to bring it before Judge Judy? Please save the tape if you do!

  7. vindalf December 11, 2010 10:29 am

    Thanks for all this info, Doug!

    In the passages you quote, from Brick’s presentation, he appears to promote the idea that even PHYSICAL features of a person can and have been ‘customized’ through systematic maltreatment during childhood, endowing the person with super-human (greater than normal) capacities to perform specific tasks.

    This is a pervasive them in all “trauma-based mind control and extreme, ritualized abuse” theorizing. Proponents not only claim the existence of secret, multigenerational conspiracies involved in sytematic sexual violation and torture of children, they also claim this abuse is purposeful beyond any “thrills” the perpetrators might derive from it – they claim it is intended to produce and has successfully produced hyper-functional “super-slaves” with super-human capacities.

    It is outrageously irresponsible for anyone who is a licensed counsellor of any kind, to publicly promote the idea that systematic abuse of a child could be the cause of anything other than dysfunctional traits. Promoting the idea that child abuse has ever been or could ever be the cause of hyper-functional traits or capacities, is the equivalent of saying that child abuse is a beneficial experience for the victim.

  8. emmablue December 11, 2010 3:24 pm

    vindalf, do you have any idea how or why Massachusetts allows this kind of so-called “therapy” business to run? Where can I go to look up the regulations?

  9. vindalf December 19, 2010 8:30 am

    Doug,

    I’m very grateful for your SMART conference expose. I think it is the most valuable contribution to public awareness of the witchhunting ‘underground’ since Evan Harrington’s expose of The 1995 SITPRCA conference:
    http://www.csicop.org/si/show/conspiracy_theories_and_paranoia_notes_from_a_mind-control_conference/

    The threat of lawsuit, by itself, can be a means of punishing someone who brings a person or group’s true nature into the public spotlight, and of suppressing their freedom of speech.

    If Neil Brick, or anyone else associated with your expose, is foolish enough to pursue lawsuits against you with the intention of ‘shutting you up’, I’d be interested in making a contribution to your legal expenses. I’m just a working class guy, with no organization behind me, and these are tough economic times but even so – I’d be interested in contributing what I can. I’m sure that many others, even those who have not followed the satanic panic witchhunt story, would also be interested in helping you to defend your freedom of speech – if it ever comes to that.

    emmablue –
    try: http://www.mass.gov
    consumer affairs and business regulations
    board of registration of psychologists
    statutes and regulations

  10. emmablue December 19, 2010 10:13 am

    Thank you, vindalf, I’ll look at that. You might also be interested in my blog which is looking at a different anti-cult group. http://freedom-is-sacred.blogspot.com and I can’t afford to donate money but anyone is welcome to also comment and support this issue. Neil Brick is mentioned as one of the recommended therapists somewhere in the archives of the anti-cult group I am criticizing. This whole quack-therapist thing is very scary, especially with possible abuse of the expanded medical system. I don’t know what-all the new federal “Obamacare” will involve, but my gut tells me that if you need a prescription for an anxiety drug or something, you will be expected to be seeing some kind of therapist along with it, and that looks very very scary if quacks like Brick are able to receive such clients who otherwise might avoid him.

  11. jeanettebartha December 20, 2010 8:32 pm

    I agree that we must push back people like Brick who sue in an attempt to shut someone up. I’m curious about the lawyers who take these cases. Are these people friends of Brick or strangers who are soaking him dry?

    Why the heck do courts entertain these filings? No wonder our judicial system is backed up.

    I would love Judge Judy hear this case.

  12. doug December 22, 2010 9:35 am

    Vindalf says:

    “If Neil Brick, or anyone else associated with your expose, is foolish enough to pursue lawsuits against you with the intention of ’shutting you up’, I’d be interested in making a contribution to your legal expenses.”

    That is a very kind gesture, though it won’t be necessary. The suit is being pursued — though I still fail to see where there is a case — and my lawyer is more than competent enough to handle it.

    I think the best thing anybody can do to fight against attempts to suppress information is to keep the information generally available. I know there are some competent bloggers commenting on this site. Feel free to post my conference report, in its entirety, on your own blogs. (I retain attribution rights. Meaning: don’t alter the text, and credit me for the piece.) Feel free to mention the suit. Email me with any questions. Know that there is nothing illegal about examining the claims made by Neil Brick and speakers of the S.M.A.R.T. conference regarding Illuminati, the CIA, Satanism, and Mind-Control, and adjudging them absurd. There is nothing “defamatory” in exposing the conspiracist underpinnings of any organization, no matter how bad for business such exposure may prove to be. Nazi Germany was founded on a conspiracy theory of Zionist world domination designs, much of which would seamlessly transition into the “Illuminati” take-over mythology we hear today. (This is no mere hyperbolic association — Conspiracy theorist William Cooper republished the whole of ‘The Protocols of The Elders of Zion’ in his book ‘Behold A Pale Horse’, with the caveat that reference to Jews need be replaced with Illuminati.) It is always dangerous to demonize some “other”, whether they be Jews or imaginary Satanists hiding maleficia throughout American suburbs. Perhaps had I attended a Nazi meeting in the 1930s and wrote a report in which I gave a brief history of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and a debunking of ‘Protocols ’ (see Norman Cohn’s ‘Warrant For Genocide’), I would similarly find myself sued – for no other reason than having made them look bad. While a comparison of S.M.A.R.T. to National Socialism is surely a strain of reasonable imagination, the comparison is apt in highlighting why it is we are entitled to offer criticism, why we have a free press, why the marketplace of ideas does not mean that one has carte blanche to advance one view without critical inquiry into their evidence for such a view, and why we have a right to call “bullshit” when the evidence is lacking.

    Emmablue –
    you seem to express concern about conspiracy-prone Psychotherapists prescribing medicine. In fact, one needs to be a psychiatrist in order to prescribe medication. The standards for being a psychotherapist are far lower than those for becoming a Psychiatrist or Clinical Psychologist. I’m not sure what the standards are in MA as of now, but I did find this article which in 1984 decried that “Psychotherapy in Massachusetts virtually unregulated” ( http://www.rickross.com/reference/cambridge/cambridge3.html ). In any case, it seems one need do no better than a Master of Arts. So, while you may be looking at MA regulatory standards, I still think the first and best recourse in consumer advocacy is public education. Let people know what you know. They can scream and threaten to sue all they want – they’re not going to kill the First Amendment.

    Jeanette –
    You ask the burning question that I’ve found everybody comes to when they hear of my case: who would take it? We really can only speculate there…

  13. emmablue December 22, 2010 4:47 pm

    Doug, you misunderstood me. I am not worried about prescriptions. I am worried about someone being sent to Neil Brick while getting a prescription from an unsuspecting doctor who is trying to recommend talk-therapy alongside the anxiety or similar meds.

  14. emmablue December 22, 2010 10:10 pm

    I posted a copy of your story in my blog, which at this point is getting about 300 hits a month without any promotional activity on my part.

    I would encourage anyone who does Youtube to make a short video about this situation. Under 5 minutes should load to most emails besides being in Youtube. The value of this, besides reaching a very active civil-liberties audience, is that you can go through youtube and place your short video as a response to others who are more popular and are on similar topics. Usually they allow the video to be placed and you can have a link in the first part of your own video’s description back to this article.

    Youtube allows only other youtube destinations as active links inside the video itself, but it allows an active link in that description field and if you put it first, it will be visible right on the page in Youtube. If lots of people do this, the word will circulate quickly about this case.

  15. emmablue December 22, 2010 10:14 pm

    omigosh: Neil Brick is in a video here, claiming those who do not believe his theories are defenders of pedophiles

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knSAmGobbD8

  16. doug December 23, 2010 9:15 am

    Charming fellow, isn’t he? I imagine that’s why he wants to be heard in front of a jury. His Elmer Fudd charm, the wavering, croaking eloquence of his voice… when you see a man like that tell you he was brainwashed by the Masonic/CIA/ Illuminati/catch-all villainous bad-guys… well, you can’t help but think there’s something to it, especially when he offers the “proof” of crudely scrawled weblinks on printing paper cue cards. Something that’s perplexing about this is, though he’s holding conferences and posting video, he seems to imagine that this falls under the rubric of “private life”.
    From my summons: “He [Doug Mesner] repeatedly contacted the owner of the company I work for, making statements to my employer about research in my private life which caused me problems at work.” Beside the question of what is meant here by “private life”, the statement itself isn’t even true. “Repeatly” explicitly means more than once, which isn’t the case. Further, if his employer does see a problem, a conflict of interest between his so-called private life and professional life, that’s a problem he has to face with his employer. Surely, I didn’t spread falsehoods to his employer which she accepted uncritically thus causing him problems at work. It seems that what’s being implied is that Neil Brick’s concepts of mental disorders, Dissociative amnesia caused by Ritual Abuse, Mind-Control, etc., have no relevant bearing upon his work as a mental health counselor, and one “expertise” does not inform the other. This seems unlikely to me, to say the least. Even impossible. Could one say the same of a counselor doubling as an exorcist publicly declaring that problems of addiction and psychosis are often the “proven” result of demonic possession? Could an organizer for NAMBLA (North American Man-Boy Love Association, open advocates for pedophilia) who also worked as an Elementary School teacher sue any journalist who approached the school to ask if the school felt there were any conflict between his publicly stated position and his professional life? Could any parent be expected to read of such a situation and think, that damn journalist has no right to report this?

  17. emmablue December 23, 2010 10:43 am

    What employer? I thought he ran his own “therapy” service. I guess I need to go back and read your original story. I thought he was full-time with his stuff and not doing it as a strange little hobby.

  18. jeanettebartha December 28, 2010 8:04 am

    Gees, I didn’t realize Brick is operating his own brand of counseling. I’m gonna jump on this. Maybe you folks can help by linking to my blog.

    jeanettebartha.wordpress.com “Multiple Personalities Don’t Exist”

    It’s new and I am working on subjects & categories. You all are welcome to be a guest contributor.

    This Brick thing is awful. Isn’t there some law that addresses people that do this that would bar them from “practicing?” All I can think of is exposing the likes of him. Any other suggestions will be welcomed.

  19. doug December 29, 2010 12:42 pm

    jeanette says: “I didn’t realize Brick is operating his own brand of counseling.”
    i don’t know what kind of counseling neil brick is doing, but if you google him up you’ll see that he works as a mental health counselor for a larger network in MA.
    interestingly, it wasn’t me who brought up the question of professional qualifications, it was brick himself. following my posting of the ritual abuse conference report, brick began commenting wherever he could, trying to rebut the report without actually confronting its content. it was brick who demanded to know what MY professional qualifications are, which of course suggested the question of what his own qualifications are. he maintains that he has worked with clients suffering dissociative disorders. neil brick, to me, is an illustrative case of how far astray one can depart from reality when one has no demarcation lines to separate memory from false memory. it is my feeling that an individual who holds religiously to the notion of recovered memory validity is a danger when in a position of mental health authority. i am, as many know, putting together a book about this, and it was in my capacity as a journalist that i contacted brick’s employer (once) to verify his claims. his employer e-mailed me to state, “Mr. Brick has never organized a conference or promoted any writings as an employee or affiliate of [his employer]. As you may be aware, Mr. Brick has his own web site, sponsors workshops and generates a newsletter all independent of his employment with [us]”
    neil brick spoke at a recent conference on dissociative identity disorder where his mini-bio stated:
    “Neil Brick is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor. He has worked with clients suffering from dissociative disorders.” http://www.aninfinitemind.com/healing_speakers.html
    it’s hard to know what to make of this. either neil brick works with clients suffering dissociative disorders in his capacity as a mental health counselor through his employer, but his employer feels that this bears no relevance to his work with S.M.A.R.T., or he does not work with dissociative disorders through his employer, but “works” with them in some capacity outside of the realm of his employment. “has worked with clients” is quite unspecific, but the statement above from his mini-bio certainly implies that he has given counseling to people believed to be suffering dissociative disorders in his capacity as a professional mental health counselor. brick himself, in his own writings, reveals that he believes dissociative disorders can be produced by ritual abuse initiated by satanists and/or “illuminati”, as he claims happened to him personally. if i were sending a distraught and confused friend or family member to a counselor, i personally wouldn’t want him or her receiving advice from an individual harboring such conspiracist notions.
    jeanette writes: “Isn’t there some law that addresses people that do this that would bar them from “practicing?” All I can think of is exposing the likes of him. Any other suggestions will be welcomed.”
    i think you’re right that exposing these problems or questions is the best way to handle them. to me, it’s less upsetting if an individual has set up his own particular “brand” of therapy that targets a market of conspiracy theorists than if that individual works for a legitimate counseling network where they may receive clients from the general public who may not already subscribe to absurd ideas, but may be in a state wherein they are vulnerable to paranoia memes. writing about this kind of thing is our first and best course of action. and this is what neil brick, and his lawyer, are attempting to prevent.
    i would love to contribute to your blog. in the meantime, please feel free to post my conference reports and/or this piece in their entirety.

  20. jeanettebartha December 31, 2010 6:19 am

    @Doug. Can you tell us who employs Neil Brick? I have also found publications by someone who calls themselves “eassurveys” as a blogger. I am suspicious that this is Mr. Brick because of the content and especially because the blogger does not permit comments.

    My blog, “Multiple Personalities Don’t Exist” is an informational blog partially with the intent to disspell myths, misinformation, disinformation and just plain lies published that many people believe to be facts that “prove” one theory or another.

    I find it disturbing that blogs, Mr. Brick for example, publishes but refuses to allow comments by readers. That is a red flag to me when bloggers do that. I ask myself, “Why do they want to write but not allow readers to ask questions or leave comments?” Particularly when controversial topics are discussed, people’s names are published, and their work distorted to back up erroneous conclusions by the blogger.

    Best. JB

    Thank you for keeping us up to date on these issues, Doug.

  21. emmablue December 31, 2010 11:29 am

    @jeannettebartha I just googled on eassurvays and it certainly looks like you are right:
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/cia-drugs/message/45159

    This is in a 2008 listing of new pages by “smartnews”

    But Jeannette, please don’t be discouraged if you find that this psych-vigilante network is a lot larger than the individuals like Neil Brick and his little following.

    It seems to have its roots in a fundamentalist extreme-right (very extreme) that hooks up with an aggressive extreme left culture in the USA. I have noticed that whenever I scratch the surface of these spiritual vigilante groups (I publish http://freedom-is-sacred.blogspot.com ) I find that the activists are coming out of that extreme fundie direction, yet I get most viciously attacked by the atheist extreme (very extreme) left, as in http://davefromqueens2.blogspot.com/2010/12/oh-my-unhinged-person-is-in-dfq2-foyer.html (which doesn’t really bother me as long as enough accurate info is included to allow independent opinions)

    So it is a damned-if-you-do-and-also-if-you-don’t situation.

    I also am still looking for who the actual employer is, for Neil Brick. I have found lots of networking-style supporters among his commenters, who are running similar counseling services. It is a scary network, especially when you look at the ones who have a little more professional polish than Brick does.

  22. doug January 2, 2011 2:24 pm

    he works for Behavioral Health Network, Inc. in MA. http://www.bhninc.org/
    he lists himself as a “Ritual Abuse and Mind Control Expert” on this site: http://www.selfgrowth.com/experts/neil_brick.html
    so if BHN claims his ritual abuse/mind-control work has no relation to his work with them, i’m not certain what justifies him as an expert, but then any random fool can register as an “expert” on selfgrowth.com.
    jeanette – you note that there is a blogger who refers to him/herself as “eassurveys”. of course, i don’t know that this is brick, but brick has — i see — written about the Extreme Abuse Survey (EAS), and the EAS gives you a good idea of what low standards of evidence ritual abuse proponents hold (http://www.suite101.com/content/extreme-abuse-surveys-a153388)
    the EAS was a non-scientific, entirely useless online survey. according to neil brick’s article about it, “These international online surveys were for adult survivors (the EAS), for therapists, clergy, counselors and other persons that had worked professionally with at least one victim of extreme abuse (the Professional-Extreme Abuse Survey or P-EAS) and for caregivers of child survivors of extreme abuse and mind control (the Child-Extreme Abuse Survey or C-EAS). They were given consecutively over three three month periods in 2007.” it would be nice to run some type of control survey online seeing how many reply in the affirmative to questions regarding the question of whether or not they’ve ever been taken aboard ET spacecraft. but then, we know there are plenty of people who make this claim, so what’s the point? what would it prove? what did the EAS prove? same thing it would prove, i suppose, if we gave a survey to an elementary school asking if the children had ever met santa claus. we could marvel over the results, then, if it turned out that over 70% of children in the first grade and younger claimed that they did indeed meet santa himself. perhaps the makers of the EAS would consider that to be solid evidence of st. nick’s existence. something all branches of the conspiracy fringe seem to always fail to understand is the general worthlessness of anecdotal reports. we know these claims are being made. better quantifying how often these claims are made (though an online survey isn’t even useful for that) does nothing to make the absurd any less so.
    and you mention the lack of comment-ability on the articles you found by brick online. it is irksome, isn’t it? in my whole article about his conference, he only cites the line “The conference is so self-evidently full of bullshit that exposing it may seem no more productive than pulling the false beard from a shopping mall Santa Claus” as defamatory, the rest are pulled from comments on various sites where HE started commenting, ranting, and carrying on about being mis-represented, claiming that the conference report was full of falsehoods. he brought the debate to the comments sections of various sites (and apparently assumes that i was EVERY person to comment skeptically against his position), and now he claims that the comments that followed have damaged his reputation and career. again, this is a guy who claims to encourage “debate” with the skeptics. not only does he not allow comments on his own site, but his behaviour indicates that he doesn’t know what “debate” really is…

  23. emmablue January 2, 2011 6:24 pm

    Also, there is a problem with the definition of “extreme abuse”. When the lynch-mobs were all for storming the Zion Mormon community in Texas, Nancy Grace actually had “experts” on who were devoting as much emotional angst to the subject of home-made cotton dresses, long hair, and the rumors that the community (which included ranch and farm land) ran its own dairy. I would never defend the serious abuse that was alleged (if it actually happened, and in that case some did) but it really scared me to see the demonization of simple home life completely apart from the sexual abuse of minors that was supposed to be the reason for the raid.

    Nancy Grace apparently thinks girls who are taught to sew are suffering extreme abuse from that act alone. And she found “experts” to support her! sheeeeesh.

  24. vindalf January 4, 2011 3:45 am

    It’s easy to be an ‘expert’ if the subject matter of your expertise is fictitious or something you invented yourself.

    It’s very difficult, in today’s world, to become one of the most renowned members of any profession – with a career built on unique, innovative, original work of genuine importance to humanity. “The groundwork” in most fields was laid by others long ago, there are many thousands of qualified professionals working in every conceivable science – especially the social sciences – whereas less than 50 years ago there were merely hundreds, or in some cases only dozens. There is little room for ‘pioneering’ left in fields like psychology, what is primarily needed in that profession at this point is drones to do the drudge work which the previous swarms of graduates don’t want to be burdened with.

    In my opinion, there is in this situation a root cause for many of the worst fabricators and spewers of nonsense associated with modern witchhunting; people like Colin Ross, Neil Brick, the Nobblitts, and several others of their ilk. There’s just no capacity for such people to become superstars of their professions in any legitimate aspect of their field – so they resort to “making a name” for themselves within illegitimate, fictitious, pseudo-scientific fringe concepts (such as multiple personality disorder or trauma-based mind control or alien abduction trauma therapy). The explosion of baseless or fraudulent ‘psychological’ concepts, championed by bottom-ranking graduates desperate to carve out some “niche” in their profession (and generate a profitable clientelle) at a time when there are more than enough practitioners to serve all the genuinely mentally ill, was exposed most ably by Dr Tana Dineen in her very courageous expose of the psychology industry “Manufacturing Victims: What the Psychology Industry Is Doing to People”.

  25. vindalf January 14, 2011 3:25 am

    The terrible tragedy in Arizona – 6 killed and 13 wounded by a madman – brings the case of Diana Napolis to mind once again. Diana Napolis is a mentally ill woman who was convicted of stalking and threatening actress Jennifer Hewitt.
    http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,626932,00.html

    Napolis had been stalking & defaming scores of persons over the internet from 1995 – 2000. She was exposed and then arrested before she reached the point of physically carrying out her threats. There can be no doubt that Napolis’ paranoid delusional state was incited by the entire community of ritual abuse/mind control victim claimants, therapists and “advocates” :
    http://encyclopediadramatica.com/Curio

    Diana Napolis remains hopelessly delusional and deranged. Her current state of mind is revealed here:
    http://diananapoliswatch.wordpress.com/

    Neil Brick cites Napolis’ delusional “research” repeatedly on the SMART website.

    I’ve seen no evidence that Arizona shooter Loughner was incited by ritual abuse/mind control believer fantasies specifically, but like many other mentally ill persons he did troll conspiracy theory websites looking for ideas to feed his delusions. In my opinion, allegations posted to these websites by RA/MC advocates – that American government, business and law enforcement leaders belong to demonic, cannibalistic pedophile cults – constitutes a potentially dangerous incitement for mentally ill persons, and Diana Napolis is proof of this.

    My condolences to all victims of delusional vigilantes & witchhunters incited by equally delusional “advocates”. It is for them that I do the work of my research and internet postings.

  26. jeanettebartha January 15, 2011 7:54 pm

    Thanks for the info on EAS – makes sense that it’s Mr. Brick.

    @vindalf. Your remarks are interesting. Who are you and what type of research are you doing?

    It is my hope that our combined efforts lead to at least one end – to make mental health care available & affordable for anyone who needs it – for as long as they need it.

  27. vindalf January 22, 2011 11:03 am

    @jeanette – I am a person of no particular consequence.
    I research, and attempt to help expose, frauds and con-artists who prey upon the general public and/or are involved in scamming government agencies.
    I’ve been researching Satanic Panic frauds and con-artists, independently and as a member of religious minority anti-defamation groups, since 1987.
    I also research diverse social phenomenon, which I perceive to pose potential threats to social harmony or the rule of law. For example; I have made contributions to the arrest and subsequent imprisonment of violent racist gang members, and also of embezzeling con-artists in government health agencies.

    My research is not ‘academic’ – I don’t do “studies” or publish papers in the Journals of any discipline or profession. (There are a couple of citations/references in research papers by genuine academics, to info – of very specialized interest and little significance – that I’ve ‘published’ online over the years) .

    When I was a young man I used to do newspaper interviews as well as local radio and television appearances, primarily as anti-defamation work, publicly disseminating info that I and various others had been involved in researching. At this point in my life I have very little interest in being a ‘public face’ for any issue or cause, including publishing info I’ve researched in book form or news articles in mainstream media. I’m very happy to share such info with interested parties, however, through blog/website postings.

    I do applaud other people’s willingness and efforts, to conduct and publish formal academic studies, to write & publish books/ news articles/ film or video that brings reality & truth to a broader audience – that’s just not the way I choose to contribute, at this time. I believe you mentioned a book about your experiences, Jeanette – THAT is something I’d very much like to see happen, as I think it would be very interesting reading and could make an important contribution to public discourse on these topics.

  28. emmablue January 22, 2011 1:04 pm

    @vindalf I’d be interested in getting in touch with you. Lately I have been watching the increased activity of a group closely related to the Brick group, which may even include some overlap in membership. How can we exchange emails?

  29. doug January 22, 2011 2:54 pm

    i’ve been away on an extended vacation (much deserved, if i do say say myself). i have come back to find that this little case with brick seems to be going my way, though i don’t see how it couldn’t. i was compelled though, to look at some of the comment strings that neil brick was claiming defamation on so i could get the missing context for that which was said. he is claiming defamation on remarks made on amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/review/R3HJ7AIN787XZV/ref=cm_cr_pr_cmt?ie=UTF8&ASIN=046501688X&nodeID=&tag=&linkCode=#wasThisHelpful
    notice that in these comments, i find myself arguing against somebody who only reveals himself as “childprotection”, but who writes very similar to neil brick and uses his tired list of links. probably the most hilarious part in this exchange is when “childprotection” responds to my uneducated mockery of the sales booth selling what i referred to in my conference report as a “more advanced species of tin-foil hat”:
    “He repeats claims about one table selling what he calls tin foil hats there. He uses this to attack the conference further. The [S.M.A.R.T.] website states that this was one table of many at the conference.”
    Aside from the fact that it makes no difference at all how many tables were at the conference, the pamphlet i kept from the conference only lists that there were 6. one for S.M.A.R.T. itself, one for “survivorship”, another ritual abuse organization neil brick belongs to, one selling copies of the book “hell minus one”, one for some group called “heartland initiative”, and another for “freedom run ministries”, as well as the one selling the elecromagnetic beam-blocking hats. so there were books and these tin-foil hats being sold. not really too much to keep track of, is it?
    here’s another favourite of mine:
    “Alien abductions have nothing to do with child abuse or cult child abuse.
    As Clancy states: “What they’re getting from alien abductions is what I wish I could get from religion,” Dr. Clancy said. The people who spoke of abductions described a sense of belonging, and of someone watching over them. “Not one of them said, ‘I wish it didn’t happen,’ Dr. Clancy said. This is the opposite for victims of child rape.”
    this is one of those comments that so entirely misses the point, you wonder if the person making really understands what the argument is. it entirely bypasses the fact that alien abduction and SRA cases are largely founded on “evidence” of recovered memories arrived at by the same methods, and to dismiss one but hold to other presents the obvious question of by what justification one can say false memories exist in one group but not the other without a reliable method for distinguishing true from false memories of ANY claim regardless of its plausibility…

  30. vindalf January 23, 2011 2:04 pm

    Welcome back, Doug!
    I’m systematically exposing “ChildProtection” ‘s distortions of fact, over on Amazon.

  31. Induced January 25, 2011 5:54 pm

    I am a victim of Recovered Memory Therapy practices – which not only induced Dissociative Identity Disorder and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, but manifested vivid, detailed memories of satanic ritual cult abuse. It was not uncommon for me to regularly find dozens of traumatized co-patients, curled up in the fetal position in various corners of the waiting room, prior to attending SRA group therapy. (Preceded by individual counseling.) Can you magine ‘remembering’ horrific stories of blood sacrifice and cannibalism? Quadruple the impact by attempting to process your own terrifying memories while simultaneously being exposed to other survival stories as multiple ‘survivors’ flashback in front of you..

    My situation was highlighted to address problematic therapies in an issue of Scientific American Mind years ago. The article was a topic of fervid debate on the (now defunct) Wall Street Journal’s “The Informed Reader,” yielding 642 comments. Among the posts, were proponents defending S.M.A.R.T. and Brick’s knowledge and brave fortitude.

    The article was then featured in Spain, Italy, Japan and France. This therapy and fallout from it, is clearly global. (As are reports of SRA, which skew whatever statics that are being offered to legitimize cults gone rampant.) If you could wrap yourself around the staggering implications regarding what, why and how – would you report it? You’ve a good start Doug.

  32. doug January 26, 2011 10:14 am

    induced – thanks for commenting. of course, there is an irony in the fact that S.M.A.R.T. supporters seem to be notorious for fire-bombing the comments sections of articles that question recovered memory therapies, they impugn scientists and research psychologists who have contributed to our understanding of memory, they besmear retractors, yet neil brick attempts to sue me when the topic turns to his organization. suddenly, this is “private life” material. (also, as mentioned above, there is the irony of the fact that you’re hard-pressed to find a website on the other side that allows for comments at all.)
    i would love to see the article that highlighted your case. is it available online?
    @vindalf – i love your comments on the amazon thread. i love that you took the time to examine noblitt’s book,

    “Noblitt’s book is full of the same style of self-serving misrepresentation common throughout the True Believer community. Noblitt cites studies as representing “empirical evidence of ritual abuse”, quoting short statements from them out of context, when the truth is that the study’s authors state their work DOES NOT support ritual abuse conspiracy theory. One example of this, is studies by Dr. Gail Goodman, Dr. Phillip Shaver, and Bette Bottoms, cited by Noblitt repeatedly as “empirical evidence”, despite Dr Goodman’s own summation of those studies:
    “Our survey revealed that there was essentially no hard evidence of organized, child abusing, satanic cults that had infiltrated preschools or the FBI or that had kidnapped or slain babies. In contrast there was much indirect evidence of clinical induction of false memories and plentiful evidence of religion-related abuse, including sexual abuse by Catholic priests. Although much of my research indicates that children can have largely accurate memories and can resist strong suggestions, they can, in contrast (as indicated by the dramatic examples of ritual abuse claims) also tell wild tales, cave in to misleading questions, and make important errors. The same is true of some adults, of course. All of the books about personal cases of SRA were written by adults who seem to have believed their own stories”

    notice, when you can’t be argued against effectively, they try to use the amazon function of voting a comment unhelpful in an attempt to expunge it from view.

  33. jeanettebartha January 29, 2011 7:54 am

    I am excited that these issues are being discussed. I’d like to invite all of you to post on my blog. Multiple Personalities Don’t Exist @ jeanettebartha.wordpress.com

    Doug, I hope you don’t mind me posting this – if you do, of course delete it.

    I have heard from survivors who weigh in heavily as you can expect, but “our” side of the issue remains silent, so come on over. If you want, you can be a guest writer, or just comment.

    Thank you for keeping this issue alive. @induced. I was into SRA at one time to. I wish people would not fall for this crap. It is so ingrained in their identity, they can’t let go and see reality. Regards, JB

  34. emmablue January 29, 2011 8:22 am

    OK, maybe I should change my user-name to Dr Double-Speak? (I have no relation to Doug so please do not get mad at him for my words. My words are mine alone.)

    Ms. Bartha, you are not fooling me, and I suspect you are not fooling many others either. Here is a quote from your own front page that you just posted:

    Multiple personalities and/or dissociative identity disorder is not a mysterious illness, an exotic malady, a creative way to cope with trauma, or a psychiatric condition largely reserved for the highly intelligent. You do not need a psychiatric degree, special education, insight, clinical expertise or experience to understand it. There are a lot of terms and concepts that, once demystified, will enable you to know the inside of this condition too.

    You seem desperate to recruit people to belief in the fiction of MPD/DID, as it is described by non-professional self-appointed believers in the so-called “survivor community”. Seriously. If a condition does not exist, then we don’t seek to understand the condition that does not exist.

    It is a little like a discussion about God between two people. If one person is a Christian and the other is a Muslim, then they will be discussing the nature of God: is God a Trinity with three names or is God a single person, Allah, with only one name? But if one person is either Christian or Muslim and the other is atheist, then there is no point to discussing the difference between the Trinity and Allah. The discussion between this second pair of people will be about the very existence of a being called “God” and not about the nature of that being called “God”. The atheist would be right to accuse the other of being disingenuous if the other continued to discuss as if the only question was the difference between Trinity and Allah and not the question of existence of God in the first place. It would be as if the believer were talking straight past the intellectual integrity of the atheist. See what I mean?

    We might seek to understand why people believe in something, why they delude themselves or why some of them put so much energy into trying to spread their delusions to others, but that is obviously not the same thing as attempting to understand a fictitious condition.

  35. jeanettebartha January 31, 2011 6:20 pm

    @Emmablue. No. I have no idea what you mean.

  36. vindalf February 12, 2011 7:13 am

    Hi! My name is “an alias”, apparently:
    http://defamationcase.blogspot.com/2011_01_01_archive.html

    Brick is really going to make a collosal fool of himself, if he’s trying to sue you – Doug – for things that I have said. The IP address for my postings here, on Amazon, on DFQ2, etc. will all resolve to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
    CANADA, Mr Brick – you nitwit. Perhaps he thinks Doug flies thousands of miles every week, to this frozen wasteland, just to post supposedly “insulting” remarks about him on internet comment threads.

    Did you hear that ‘ritual abuse & mind control victim claimant’ advocate, Devin Norris, was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment for possessing and distributing pictures and videos of little boys being sexually violated? He pleaded guilty to having 86 child porn videos and more than 3,000 child porn pictures on his computer:
    http://www.newsobserver.com/2010/10/20/750321/computer-owner-guilty-of-child.html

    http://www.newsobserver.com/2011/01/20/931725/man-to-serve-12-years-for-child.html

    Compounding the irony in this case, Devin Norris had been arrested and charged with possession of child pornography less than 48 hours after doing a radio interview with Nick Bryant – author of “The Franklin Scandal”. The Franklin case has been one of the major sources of and inspirations for CIA-satanic cult ritual abuse & mind control rumors, over the past 20 years. Nick Bryant was a featured speaker at the 2010 SMART conference:
    http://ritualabuse.us/smart-conference/2010-conference/

    The RA-MC True Believers cult are now doing their best to pretend that Devin Norris never existed. That’s what they do whenever one of their friends or allies gets exposed as a fraud, a con-artist, a sex offender, a supremacist/militia domestic terrorist, etc – things which have occurred many times over the last 30 years.

    They never talk about John Todd aka Christopher Kollyns, anymore. Todd was once the foremost “ex-illuminati satanist” fraudulent testimonialist. He predated Mike Warnke, and once accused Warnke of stealing his ‘material’. Many modern concepts about secret satanic cult control of Western governments, intelligence agencies & law enforcement, originated with him. Todd/Kollyns did have a secret, but it wasn’t about satanic infiltration of government. Todd’s secret was that he was a pedophile and a rapist:
    “Todd was arrested in May 1987 for the rape of a University of South Carolina graduate student. After his arrest, he was additionally charged with sexually molesting two children who attended a karate school where he worked. He was convicted of the rape in January 1988 and sentenced to 30 years in state prison”.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Todd_(occultist)

    You don’t hear Brick et al talking much about Fritz Springmeier aka Victor E. Schoff, anymore either. Springmeier “is an American conspiracy theorist and militant religious right wing activist, formerly a resident of Corbett, Oregon, who has written a number of books claiming that satanic forces are behind a move toward world domination by various families and organizations” such as “The Illuminati Formula Used to Create an Undetectable Total Mind Controlled Slave”.
    “Springmeier has been linked to a violent extremist group called the Army of God, and it was alleged that he had been growing marijuana with a member of that organization in order to supplement his income.He was arrested, together with his wife, on charges of drug trafficking after investigations into a white separatist group revealed evidence of marijuana cultivation. In 2003 Springmeier was sentenced to 9 years in prison for his involvement in an armed robbery in Damascus, Oregon in 1997, in which he set a bomb at an adult video store as an accomplice in a bank robbery by another right-wing militant”:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fritz_Springmeier

    Brick needs to understand that I’ve been researching his cultesque community since 1987, that I’ve worked with law enforcement and academics investigating “satanic panics” – including some people he references as sources for his “proofs” – that I have access to all the sources of info available to him, and some sources that will never be available to him. I know where ALL the ritual abuse/mind control victim claimant skeletons are buried, and I haven’t even started to publicly disclose the sordid details in a serious way.

  37. doug February 12, 2011 10:48 am

    just as some of us aren’t too terribly surprised when the megachurch personality or politician-as-anti-homosexual-agenda-crusader is caught with a male prostitute & pocket full of crystal meth, it seems reasonable to harbour suspicions of these middle-to-upper-age loners in the false field of ritual abuse criminology who obsess over clearly fictitious tales of sadistic sexual torture & paedophilia. evidence isn’t with them, prestige is relegated to a marginal fringe of the emotionally & mentally vulnerable, there can’t be any real sense of progress… yet they are absolutely compelled to these stories of sexual abuse.
    it wouldn’t disturb me in the least to hear that gerald amirault was baby-sitting the neighborhood kids, but neil brick, on the other hand….

    many of you are probably aware of the johnson verdict in WI: http://www.examiner.com/underground-in-boston/historic-wisconsin-verdict-rules-for-3rd-party-false-memory-case
    a newspaper writing about the case in WI failed to make any mention of the nature of the recovered memories in question which included the standard satanic ritual abuse folklore. instead, disappointingly, ignoring any issue of corroboration, disproving evidence, or even responsibility, they went to our little pal, neil brick, for comment:

    “Neil Brick, founder of SMART (Stop Mind Control and Ritual Abuse), a Massachusetts organization that works with survivors of extreme abuse, said it’s a misconception that there are therapists out there initiating courses of therapy that lead to the surfacing of repressed memories. Rather, something in the patient’s adult life may have triggered the memory, and the therapist helps him or her explore its relevancy, Brick said.” http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/crime_and_courts/article_753791e0-2822-11e0-9cd7-001cc4c002e0.html

    of course, brick has endorsed stories of recovered memories by people who flatly tell of their therapists “initiating courses of therapy that lead to the surfacing of repressed memories”. so what is he saying? that this doesn’t happen? that it IS wrong to do this? would he care to elaborate on his position regarding techniques like hypnosis and guided imagery? or is he just dodging the question, as he so often does?

    this also raises some very serious questions about brick’s licensing as a mental health counsellor in MA. keep in mind, brick’s employer at behavioral health network, inc. wrote:

    “Mr. Brick has never organized a conference or promoted any writings as an employee or affiliate of [his employer]. As you may be aware, Mr. Brick has his own web site, sponsors workshops and generates a newsletter all independent of his employment with [us]”

    in what capacity, one wonders, does S.M.A.R.T. work with “survivors of extreme abuse”? ostensibly, S.M.A.R.T. is only a newsletter and an annual conference. neil brick is cautious enough to append the disclaimer that these aren’t intended as therapy. again, what “work” does S.M.A.R.T. do with these “survivors”? is it work that would fall within the confines of his expertise according to his licensing board?

    neil brick was licensed by ALLIED MENTAL HEALTH: http://license.reg.state.ma.us/public/pubLicenseQ.asp?board_code=MH&type_class=CC&license_number=000006716&color=blue&lb=MH

    allied mental health conforms to the codes of ethics outlined by:
    (1) (a) Ethical Standards of the American Counseling Association;

    (b) Ethical Standards and Code of Ethics of the American Mental Health Counselors Association;

    (2) Model Code of Ethics for Marriage and Family Therapists of the Association of Marital and Family Therapy Regulations Boards;

    (3) (a) Code of Professional Ethics for Rehabilitation Counselors of the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification; and

    (b) Code of Professional Ethics of the Certification of Disability Management Specialists Commission; and

    (4) Professional Conduct Manual of the National Association of School Psychologists.

    some of the possibly relevant sections of the ACA code of ethics state:

    Counselors practice only within the
    boundaries of their competence,
    based on their education, training,
    supervised experience, state and national
    professional credentials, and
    appropriate professional experience.
    Counselors gain knowledge, personal
    awareness, sensitivity, and skills pertinent
    to working with a diverse client
    population. (See A.9.b., C.4.e., E.2., F.2.,
    F.11.b.)

    C.4.a. Accurate Representation
    Counselors claim or imply only professional
    qualifications actually completed
    and correct any known misrepresentations
    of their qualifications
    by others. Counselors truthfully represent
    the qualifications of their professional
    colleagues. Counselors
    clearly distinguish between paid and
    volunteer work experience and accurately
    describe their continuing
    education and specialized training.
    (See C.2.a.)

    C.6.c. Media Presentations
    When counselors provide advice or
    comment by means of public lectures,
    demonstrations, radio or television
    programs, prerecorded tapes,
    technology-based applications,
    printed articles, mailed material, or
    other media, they take reasonable
    precautions to ensure that
    1. the statements are based on appropriate
    professional counseling
    literature and practice,
    2. the statements are otherwise consistent
    with the ACA Code of Ethics, and
    3. the recipients of the information
    are not encouraged to infer that
    a professional counseling relationship
    has been established.

    http://www.counseling.org/Resources/CodeOfEthics/TP/Home/CT2.aspx

    from the AMHCA code of ethics:

    g) Mental health counselors have the responsibility to ensure the accuracy of, and to
    indicate the validity of, data shared with other parties.

    3. Conflict of Interest
    Mental health counselors are aware of possible conflicts of interests that may arise between
    the counselor and the client, the employer, consultant and other professionals.
    Mental health counselors may choose to consult with any other professionally competentAMHCA CODE OF ETHICS (REVISED 2010)
    10
    person about a client assuring that no conflict of interest exists. When conflicts occur, mental
    health counselors clarify the nature of the conflict and inform all parties of the nature and
    direction of their loyalties and responsibilities, and keep all parties informed of their
    commitments.

    2. Advocate
    Mental health counselors may serve as advocates at the individual, institutional, and/or
    societal level in an effort to foster sociopolitical change that meets the needs of the client or the
    community.
    a) Mental health counselors are aware of and make every effort to avoid pitfalls of advocacyAMHCA CODE OF ETHICS (REVISED 2010)
    14
    including conflicts of interest, inappropriate relationships and other negative consequences.
    Mental health counselors remain sensitive to the potential personal and cultural impact on
    clients of their advocacy efforts.
    b) Mental health counselors may encourage clients to challenge familial, institutional, and
    societal obstacles to their growth and development and they may advocate on the clients’
    behalf. Mental health counselors remain aware of the potential dangers of becoming overly
    involved as an advocate.

    C. Service on public or private boards and other organizations
    When serving as members of governmental or other organizational bodies, mental health
    counselors represent the mental health counseling profession and are accountable as
    individuals to the Code of Ethics of the American Mental Health Counselors Association.
    V. Commitment to the Public
    Mental health counselors recognize they have a moral, legal, and ethical responsibility to
    the community and to the general public. Mental health counselors are aware of the prevailing
    community and cultural values, and the impact of professional standards on the community.
    A. Public Statements
    Mental health counselors in their professional roles may be expected or required to make
    public statements providing counseling information or professional opinions, or supply
    information about the availability of counseling products and services. In making such
    statements, mental health counselors accurately present their education, professional
    qualifications, licenses and credentials, expertise, affiliations, and functions, as well as those of
    the institutions or organizations with which the statements may be associated. Public
    statements serve the purpose of providing information to aid the public in making
    informed judgments and choices. All public statements will be consistent with this Code of
    Ethics.
    https://www.amhca.org/assets/news/AMHCA_Code_of_Ethics_2010_w_pagination_cxd_51110.pdf

    http://www.mass.gov/Eoca/docs/dpl/complaint.pdf

    i do find that little defamation blog amusing. interesting that he hasn’t mentioned how the lawsuit itself is going any time recently. as he is clearly reading these comments, i’ll leave it to him to update you on the case. if he declines, i’ll fill you in, but i’m just terribly curious to hear how he will interpret events that, just to divulge the least, don’t seem to be going his way…

  38. vindalf February 12, 2011 12:41 pm

    VERY useful information, above – thank you Doug! I’ve highlighted those links in my files, for a thorough examination of each point.

    I want to briefly clarify something that An Anonymous Entity posted on a blog titled – “defamation case”:
    “An alias states in essence that Neil Brick promotes the idea that the abuse of a child could be the cause of anything other than dysfunctional traits (when discussing how survivors may be tortured to do other roles) and that this is equal to saying that child abuse is beneficial for its victims. Neither SMART nor Neil Brick have ever stated child abuse is beneficial in anyway. SMART and Neil Brick’s strong stance is that child abuse is always traumatic to its victims”.

    I have never claimed that Neil Brick ever made this precise, direct statement: “child abuse is beneficial for its victims”. Nor have I ever claimed that Neil Brick has directly, explicitly denied that child abuse is traumatic to its victims.

    However, Brick has been quoted claiming that – as a child victim of extreme abuse – he
    ” was very small and I was kept small and thin by programming until the age of 9, when a primary perpetrator went into the hospital for a while and I was no longer afraid to eat. This programming started around the age of 3. This is why I am so small today and I am smaller than my siblings. I was kept small to fit into vents and ducts to work on missions to go into places to open doors, to let others in, steal materials or records, spy on meetings or kill people”.

    This statement by Brick contains some obvious, implicit claims.
    Brick is claiming that the development of very specific physical traits that he possesses, were caused by abuse he suffered in childhood: “I was kept small and thin by programming” “This is why I am so small today”.

    Brick is claiming that these physical traits bestowed on him the ability to perform certain kinds of tasks, at a level beyond the ability an average person who did not suffer extreme abuse could perform: “I was kept small to fit into vents and ducts to work on missions to go into places to open doors, to let others in, steal materials or records, spy on meetings or kill people”.

    Brick is therefore claiming that extreme child abuse can be the cause of a victim developing super-human capacities to perform specific tasks. This means he is claiming extreme abuse can be the cause of constructive (greater capacities) development in a victim, rather than destructive development (diminished capacities).
    He is also claiming that the development of these traits caused by abuse: “I was kept small and thin by programming”, bestowing greater-than-normal capacity to perform certain tasks, allowed him to be succesful in carrying out demands made upon him by his alleged “programmer-controllers”. Since he implies that his life depended on such success, the obvious conclusion is that the development of these traits caused by abuse – however traumatic the abuse might have been – was ultimately beneficial to him.

  39. Induced February 12, 2011 7:53 pm

    Patients with iatrogenic DID, PTSD and unfathomable induced memories of satanic ritual abuse have been traumatized in THERAPY beyond what most can comprehend. The ‘lucky ones’ who managed to survive multiple hospitalizations, ostracism, family alienation, heavy dosages of mind and mood altering medications, hours upon hours of gut-wrenching “therapeutic abbreactions” and disability, end up clinging to their diagnosis for pure salvation’s sake. Considering anything other than what their therapist has told them would mean they would have to question exactly what they have been fighting so hard to accept – that they were brutally tortured by numerous cult members and survived only by the grace of dissociation.

    With attention, support and guidance from their specialized therapist, these patients finally feel safe, validated and understood. Never mind if their therapist has a God complex, to the patient, that counselor is truly, omnipotent and all-knowing. Patients with iatrogenic DID and memories of SRA function only by working a program where their alleged abuse is ‘honored.’ Questioning the veracity of their memories would have devastating consequences. (Their therapist has already advised them of this fact, by the way.) When an outside source has the tenacity to scrutinize a therapists’ methods, both counselor and patient, becomes outraged.

    Who do you turn to when there is a growing amount of scientific sources that point to problematic therapies for inducing sensational memories of cannibalism that are false? Neil Brick, for starters.

    Contortionistic, prolific Brick, who purports to have ‘been there and done that’ when it comes to Satanic Ritual Abuse and mind control. His uber copious postings and re-postings of one-sided mass conspiracy SRA rhetoric are under the guise of advocacy against child abuse – but if you pay attention, they are largely self-serving in nature. Neil wants credit for all his hard work. (Hence, the same long-winded, out-dated information blogged, and ballyhooed, everywhere from yahoo groups to business marketing sites.)

    Brick’s beliefs are quite conspicuous – anything and everything is plausible… except of course, the possibility of false memories. Many of his online entries are so extreme and preposterous, it is hard to visualize him competent elsewhere. But to someone who believes themselves a victim of atrocities, whether real or imagined, Brick offers a safe harbor of unbridled acceptance and alliance. Utilizing the S.M.A.R.T. newsletter and conferences for his evil-is-everywhere platform, Brick does a major disservice pedaling propaganda to the growing population of patients (and their loved ones) who are already, painfully misled. Brick’s apparent agenda is to be THE specialist on ritual abuse … and on dissociate identity disorder,,, and on how to spot a perpetrator… and how to recognize a victim.

    It is my belief that Brick is hurting far more people than he could ever help. His years of campaigning have completely lacked balance regarding updated, scientifically-founded studies and statics he seems so keen on sharing. (Yet this man makes presentations to share his knowledge and methods with other therapists!) I wonder, if Brick is so devoted to identifying and halting abuse, why does he refuse to acknowledge actual incidents of iatrogenic DID and false memories? Why IS he so intensely invested in wearing proverbial blinders?

  40. doug February 15, 2011 1:58 pm

    @vindalf — in fact, if i were to make a counter-claim, i assume it would be far easier for me, as i probably wouldn’t have to collect IPs, but could solicit affidavits from the real authors of the comments, if i happen to know who wrote some of them. i haven’t really explored this, and i’m not sure if comments of yours were in the summons. in any case, the subpoenas against me were withdrawn… maybe brick will elaborate on that.

    i particularly like this non-rebuttal to comparisons to alien abduction:

    “Mesner continues to make the false claim comparing alien abductions to ritual abuse cases. The fact is that there have been criminal convictions for crimes with ritual abuse elements and ritual abuse survivors suffer from the severe trauma symptoms survivors of extreme abuse do.”

    of course, claiming that there have been convictions with “ritual abuse elements” begs the question of what “elements” are we talking about? which cases, so that we might examine these claims and determine if they bring us any nearer to validating neil brick’s claim that he was brainwashed and abused by masonic illuminati?
    clearly, brick (as the defamation blog is posted by some anonymous source, it is posted “with permission” from brick’s own site) hasn’t kept up with the science.

    “abuse survivors suffer from the severe trauma symptoms survivors of extreme abuse do.”

    in a paper titled: Psychophysiological Responding During Script-Driven Imagery in People Reporting Abduction by Space Aliens, Dr. Richard J. McNally, et al, at harvard university found that alien abduction victims “suffer from the severe trauma symptoms survivors of extreme abuse do.”

    the abstract:

    Is recollection of highly improbable traumatic experiences accompanied by psychophysiological responses indicative of intense emotion? To investigate this issue, we measured heart rate, skin conductance, and left lateral frontalis electromyographic responses in individuals who reported having been abducted by space aliens. Recordings of these participants were made during script-driven imagery of their reported alien encounters and of other stressful, positive, and neutral experiences they reported. We also measured the psychophysiological responses of control participants while they heard the scripts of the abductees. We predicted that if ‘‘memories’’ of alien abduction function like highly stressful memories, then psychophysiological reactivity to the abduction and stressful scripts would be greater than reactivity to the positive and neutral scripts, and this effect would be more pronounced among abductees
    than among control participants. Contrast analyses confirmed this prediction for all three physiological measures (ps < .05). Therefore, belief that one has been traumatized may generate emotional responses similar to those provoked by recollection of trauma (e.g., combat)."

    hmm. so what straw can be grasped at now? and, perhaps more poignantly, why bother? it's not as though S.M.A.R.T. hasn't had overlap with the "UFO" community. don't renounce them just on my account. from the march 1999 S.M.A.R.T. newsletter:

    "The Rally To End Secrecy will be held on the steps of the Capitol Building at Noon on October 24th 1999. Information on the rally is at http://www.endsecrecy.com The rally will include those joining together as one voice to change the course of business as usual in Washington, including those in the UFO community, the “new energy” or “zero-point energy” community, supporters of industrial hemp legalization, anti-HAARP activists, all those horrified by out-of-control military spending and mind control experiments. Please use caution at this site and other sites connected to it, they may be triggering.”

    from january 1999:

    “Please use caution while reading this. It may be triggering. Michael Donovan (E-mail: michaeldonovan@ddaccess.com) is looking for computer literate people with alleged military mind control issues, ritual abuse and abduction issues (possible UFO and paramilitary). As always, please use caution when contacting any resource in our newsletter.”

    also, a search for UFO-watcher william Schnoebelen on brick’s site yields 13 hits.

    here’s an online video clip that will introduce you to the ideas of mr. schnoebelen:

    http://socioecohistory.wordpress.com/2010/08/31/bill-schnoebelen-ufos-aliens-masonry-and-satanism-in-the-occult-social-order/

    “In this excellent lecture, Bill Schnoebelen gives his personal experience and understanding on the UFO and Alien Abduction phenomena. Bill Schnoebelen, ex-Illuminati, 90 degree FreeMason, ex-vampire, witch, Satanist… before he turned to Jesus Christ, recounts his personal experiences with UFOs, Aliens, demonic entities, fallen angels, occult Satanic ceremonies, rituals”

  41. notaninja December 4, 2011 2:52 pm

    Hi Doug.
    Is there any way I can contact you by skype or in person?
    I’m in London, UK
    I have a lot of extremely disturbing data I would like to share with you regarding abuses by psychotherapists, some properly qualified, some not.
    I am in possession of sensitive information that shows that an astonishing number of psychotherapists, psychologists and other mental health professionals are involved in dangerous / criminal pseudo-spiritual “new age” cults.
    A very serious situation has arisen because of this.
    I don’t really want to say more about this here but if there is a way I can contact you or a trusted colleague I would like to get in touch.
    I think that you would be very interested in the information that I have collected over the years.
    If you reply to my email can you please keep it brief and not quote this message, just arrange to skype or a meeting in person. I am concerned about my emails possibly being compromised.
    If I can send you messages somehow via this blog that is fine with me but you will have to advise me on how to send them as I can’t see how to do it.
    Thanks and I hope to hear from you soon.
    I am not wearing a tin foil hat – honest!

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