The following was written by Blogger Bob. The Molson is offered to him in good faith. I've only added links, images, and some very light editing to go along with his fine prose. For convenience folks are encouraged to right click for new windows. The stuff we've been on about isn't an enigma. The learning curve isn't that steep. DFQ2 is in jeopardy. Bob is having cold feet concerning being added to the blog roll. Donkeytale has threatened to go Greta Garbo on us. Speaking of which, here's some eye candy, before we get to the show.
Classic Beauty Engraved
Blogger Bob on the Satanic Panic
Could SRA have been a hysterical response in part to the unspeakable, the Priest as pedophilic sexual predator...?
Yes - I'm convinced that this has been an important factor in the development & propagation of Satanic Panic. You've hit a nail on the head squarely, here.
It is easy to picture Traditionalist Catholics in particular experiencing a mental meltdown when first confronted by undeniable evidence of pervasive child abuse/sexual abuse by Catholic clergy and lay order members. Their theological conceptions of reality, of "how the universe is ordered", wouldn't be able to accomodate that information...like a sci-fi robot repeating "does not compute!" over & over until their head explodes.
For such persons, there would have to be some "other power" at work behind these clergy abuse cases - and that "other power" would naturally be Satan hisself. But not Satan as a metaphor for human fallibility, rather Satan as a literal being of pure evil directing legions of satanic cult minions ala "The Exorcist".
Catholic clergy could not possibly be the worst child abusers in society, Traditionalists would likely rationalize. If Priests were guilty of abusing dozens of children, then there must be satanic cults abusing thousands (or hundreds of thousands) of children. If Priests were guilty of physically abusing children, then there must be satanic cults torturing, mutilating, murdering & eating children. There MUST be "a greater evil" out there, even if it had to be invented out of elements from the Inquisition, mythology and popular horror fiction.
Lawrence Pazder, the Canadian psychiatrist who authored "Michelle Remembers", was a devout conservative Catholic.
John DeCamp is conservative Catholic, as was Kathleen Sorenson - the Nebraska foster parent whose suggestive "questioning" of children in her care ultimately developed into the Franklin case. You can find one of Sorenson's credulous rants on the pages of Fatima Crusader:
I have some knowledge & insights about this topic because I happened to be involved in a cluster of intellectual pursuits and social networks that were impacted by the Satanic Panic as it went down in the 80's & 90's.
I was a student in the early 80's, studying Child Development, and I was a volunteer with the local Rape Crisis Centre (later called Sexual Assault Centres). That made me aware of the very real tragedy of sexual violence in our society, particularly as perpetrated against women and children of either gender.
I was also studying Comparative Religion (really, the history and practices of all the major faiths), and as a hobby I studied and researched tiny & obscure religious/spiritual/metaphysical movements & groups that have arisen (and largely, died out) over the last 500 years. This gave me insights into the realities - contrasted to hysterical fantasies - about "occult" teachings & practices, "satanism", "witchcraft", "neopaganism" & "wicca", as well as obscure offshoots from Catholicism, Mormonism and evangelical fundamentalism.
My community had problems with organized bigotry in the 80's, including serious criminal activity by neo-nazi skinhead gangs affiliated with Aryan Nations Church. I was involved in organizing protests and an anti-racist community response to these bigots, as well as anti-defamation activism on behalf of smaller subcultures such as Women's Spirituality groups. These networkings gave me access to reports of threats, vandalism & violence against a wide range of social minorities - reports that mainstream media often declined to cover.
I was a big fan of Zine culture (remember "Factsheet Five"?). Before the internet, Zines were "the everyman's media" and throughout the 80's I ordered and collected reams of self-published and small press materials including evangelical tracts from a variety of faith communities. This gave me insight into what these evangelicals were telling their followers about other groups in our society and what they were saying to each other within their own communities that they might not be saying in their public radio/tv broadcasts.
There are a couple of good academic books that recount & analyze what happened and theories/reasons why it happened, during this Satanic Panic. My perspective is not an academic analysis - it is simply an account of what I personally perceived, experienced and learned.
First there were the evangelical testimonialists - con-artists who made their living as speakers or author/speakers travelling the evangelical/charismatic/fundamentalist church circuit - giving a false "testimony" of their supposed involvement in "the occult", "satanism", "witchcraft" and/or "the illuminati", and 'warning' their audiences that secretive "reverse-christianity" satanic cults were real, powerful and active in their communities. Some began their crusades in the 70's. ALL of these people were liars & frauds. Two of the most influential were Mike Warnke and John Todd.
There were other anti-occult authors & speakers in the evangelical circuit, but these fraudulent testimonialists were important because their claims to having "come out from" supposed satanic groups made them "whistleblowers" - termed "renegades" in Hofstadter's brilliant "The Paranoid Style In American Politics". Hofstadter said: "In some part, the special authority accorded the renegade derives from the obsession with secrecy so characteristics of such movements: the renegade is the man or woman who has been in the Arcanum, and brings forth with him or her the final verification of suspicions which might otherwise have been doubted by a skeptical world".
From my own studies & research I was aware that organized "reverse-christianity" satanism has never existed in the real world. This is the "satanism" most frequently described by supposed SRA survivors. Reverse-christianity satanists supposedly believe that they serve satan by being and doing "evil". They are supposedly obsessed with "defiling" anything or anyone that a Christian would perceive to be holy, righteous or "pure" - especially symbols of the Christian faith, children and infants. (A reverse-christianity satanist would supposedly, for example, derive particular delight from raping an infant with a crucifix). All of their rites & rituals would supposedly somehow mock or "reverse" those of Christian (specifically Catholic/High Anglican) traditions. Reverse-christianity satanists supposedly perceive and measure their own actions with the same moral compass as a righteous Christian would. They would engage in "perverted" sexual acts - judging those acts with Jerry Falwell's moral yardstick and thus perceiving them to be "perverted", simply BECAUSE they are "perverted" acts and satan would supposedly be pleased by this contempt for and rebellion against "godliness".
Jimmy Swaggart- I have sinned.
Reverse-christianity satanism has only ever manifested in occasional deranged individuals or tiny, short-lived groups of mutually-supporting sociopaths. There has never been a long-term, large-scale or complex organization of reverse-christianity satanists. It would be impossible for such an organization to remain functional over even small periods of time, as many critically important organizational processes would be inherently sabotaged by the member's adherence to their own professed belief system.
No real-life religious/spiritual movement or organization accused or suspected of harboring "reverse-christianity" beliefs, motivations or practices, is actually "guilty" of doing so. The Process did not, LeVay and the Church of Satan do not, Aquino and the Temple of Set do not, Crowleyan Thelemites do not (and Aliester Crowley most definitely DID NOT), Wiccans do not, Gerald Gardner did not, etc, etc, etc.
Protestant Fundamentalists have a history of not trusting in or accepting the legitimacy of secular governments and public institutions, exemplified by the Plymouth Brethren Deacon who habitually exercised his democratic franchise by spoiling his ballot, writing "I VOTE FOR KING JESUS" across it. In America, stung by humiliating losses in public clashes with forces of modernism in the early 1900s, many swore off involving themselves in "the public sphere" entirely.
But by the 70's, especially encouraged by an Evangelical in the White House, there were movements encouraging fundamentalists to re-engage in all areas of public life - such as Falwell's Moral Majority. I saw this myself, in the form of a wave of aggressively evangelical young people in my child welfare related classes. There have always been evangelicals in child welfare, what was new about these classmates was their determination to work within and have an impact on purely secular (rather than specifically religious) child welfare institutions and agencies.
Jerry Falwell in political bed with Ronald Reagan
These young people were, coincidentally, part of the generation of evangelical youths targeted by and exposed to fraudulent Satanic hysteria spreaders like Mike Warnke. I first heard of him through one of these people, and learned that he and other "let's all fear the alleged satanic cults in our backyards" speakers drew great crowds at the massive new Pentacostal cathedral several times a year. This was probably happening in your community too, in the early 80's, anywhere around North America.
At the same time, there was explosive growth in some alternative spirituality movements - Women's Spirituality groups, neopaganism, wicca, traditional native-pagan revivalists, some New Age groups. Before long, my evangelical classmates began to tell me about new speakers at their church who were "a former wicca high priest" or "a former member of Transendental Meditation high council", and wouldn't you know it...these new testimonialists were claiming that Wicca and TM were really satanic cults also involved in drug trafficking, kidnappings, murders, etc.. I was beginning to understand the formula - anytime a movement not approved of by fundamentalists gains popularity & press, a fraudulent ex-member of the movement pops up to warn Christians the movement is really a satanic cult plot.
There was also a big push going for a national daycare plan, with new (secular), publicly funded daycare centres to open in communities across the country. Fundamentalist commentators were furious about this, calling the plan a plot to destroy "the family". I wondered, prophetically as it turned out, in 1983, when I would hear about an ex-satanic cult daycare operator doing the evangelical circuit.
The anti-cult movement and "cult awareness" groups that developed in the 70's seemed to spiral into overdrive after the terrible tragedy of Jonestown. The focus seemed to shift from "deprogramming" adult children involved in known groups to searching out unknown groups that might be likely candidates to be the next tragedy, "before it happens again". Some began hunting for the alleged satanic cults they had heard about from Warnke or John Todd, or later on from Bill Schnoebelen, Tom Sanguinet, Doc Marquis and others. Betraying their total ignorance of the subject, some apparently believed the word "occult" was related to the word "cult" and used them interchangeably; "the kids are involved in an occult". These were the proto satan-hunters.
Have a nice, cold glass of Kool-aid.
Meanwhile, young heavy metal and punk fans were driving some civic officials and uninformed cops into paranoid fits by spray-painting band related "satanic" graffiti all over their towns. Young heavy metal fans, in juvenile detention centres, psychiatric facilities, foster homes and other child welfare facilities were similarly driving their caregivers into paranoia with tales of the "satanism" that they & their friends were practising and which the adults around them were too uninformed to understand was almost entirely their own inventions. It is understandable that some persons who grew up with the fraudulent tales of satanic cults that never existed, from the likes of Warnke, would conclude that these teen "satanists" in their communities must be involved in the same (imaginary) satanic conspiracies, and start searching for likely ringleaders (who never existed).
I believe it was such self-appointed Satan Hunters who were responsible for the death threats against New Age booksellers, the vandalism of venues where Women's Spirituality and neopagan groups held their meetings, the anonymous "tips" to public pagan's employers that they were really "a babykilling satanist", that were reported through the anti-defamation networks I was involved with - rare, yet troubling reports in the early 80's escalating to alarming frequency by the decade's end. There was some kind of, likely spontaneous, witchhunting going on - which meant that there was probably a social panic underway in some segments of the population.
And then the sleazy tabloidesque tv "exposes" on "satanic crime" began, along with mass arrests of alleged child abuse cultists in several communities, with preposterous "reverse-christianity" satanic cult allegations, and the existence of a full-fledged social panic was confirmed.
Anything for a buck?
While still in college I opened a small "world religions" bookstore that catered to academics with interests similar to mine and practitioners of smaller faith groups. In the later 80's, I was approached by members of the local law enforcement "intelligence gathering" unit through the store. Like many, many other communities across North America, our police and child protection agencies were getting reports of alleged criminal activities involving "occult" or "satanic" groups. These police officers were essentially clueless about such topics (like 99% of the population) and were looking for:
1)genuine source documents i.e., how occult practitioners themselves described their beliefs & practices - materials which I carried.
2)someone to translate such documents into terminology/concepts they were more familiar with, and to interpret "occult"/spiritual/religious paraphenalia or symbolism found at alleged crime scenes
3)a contact who could extend invitations to practitioners of obscure religious/spiritual groups, who might be interested in meeting with law enforcement for the purpose of explaining or demonstrating their own beliefs and practices.
In return, these police officers provided me with "occult crime" "training manuals" and other "resource materials" that were being used as the basis of "satanic/occult crime" information & training seminars for law enforcement agencies, child protection agencies and other justice system or social welfare practitioners across North America at that time.
Kee MacFarlane- McMartin Preschool Satan Hunter
I was horrified by these "occult crime investigator" manuals. The idea that they were being used to train persons with real power over other people's lives was terrifying. Because, they were filled with little more than IGNORANCE, FANTASIES and SUPERSTITION.
In some cases, they referenced fraudulent con-artists like Mike Warnke as "experts" with "first-hand knowledge of criminal satanic cults today". Warnke was incapable of giving "first-hand, expert knowledge" about satanic cults because HE WAS NEVER A MEMBER OF ONE. He was only an expert on his own fantasies of what satanic cults "must" be like.
Many of these manuals revealed their author's ignorance of the subjects they were supposedly experts on, through chapters on "occult signs & symbols you might encounter at a crime scene", wherein the interpretations given to the symbols they showed were NOT their traditional meanings and were totally unrelated to the Kabbalistic systems from which the symbols were originally derived. This turned out to be not surprising, when I later learned that many of these interpretations were given to the authors by the self-styled teen satanists they had interviewed. They were some kid's personal interpretation concocted from their own imagination, not derived from scholarly sources.
Most of these manuals showed a total ignorance of the fact that historic occult rituals were derived from judeo-christian mystical traditions. They were created by god-fearing Jews and Christians, who believed they would assist them to DO GOD'S WILL by vanquishing supernatural evils in HIS name. In fact, the power that most of them call upon is the Judeo-Christian God, using mystical titles for Him. They have nothing whatsoever to do with worshipping Satan or "doing evil".
One of these "resource materials", created by a fundamentalist police officer, warned that only Christian investigators should possess books on satanism/occult themes or keep such materials in their homes, because true Christians would be protected from the demonic possession such materials could supposedly cause, but others would not be!
This reflects very revealing attitudes and assumptions underlying the involvement of evangelical testimonialists and Ministries in secular law enforcement & child welfare investigations into satanic crime allegations. From the viewpoint of some evangelical ministries, they have been more engaged in "battling the devil" in our society than the rest of us, which ought to defacto make them the only real experts on Satan & satanists (when, objectively, they only possess expertise in their own fantasies about satanists that don't actually exist). There is an ironic truth here, however. Many satanic crime allegations were derived directly from the falsehoods told by fraudulent evangelical testimonialists, and they naturally possess the greatest "expertise" on their own fantasies. People like Warnke probably expected that they could get away with their false testimony, forever. Most of the population has been completely uninterested in subjects like satanism and the occult and are therefore totally uninformed on those topics, unable to confront false statements that con-artists might make on those subjects. And since the satanic cults these frauds claim to be ex-members of don't actually exist, since "reverse-christianity" satanism doesn't actually exist, no one can prove that what they have to say about it is false.
How did satanic cult fantasies become insinuated into the statements of children making allegations of sexual abuse? They came from the Satan Hunters lurking in child welfare agencies and institutions, in church ministries and foster homes, members of religious communities that have never trusted secular governments or institutions even if they work for them, informal groupings of "concerned parents & community members" who KNOW the satanic cults are out there and are determined to turn them out through their own "investigations". Read Bruce Perry's "Satanic Panic" essay for a sickening account of how this was done in Gilmer, Texas, and you will understand how similar processes played out in other communities.
I am very much aware of the Dominionists - unfortunately. What a horrifying concept; turning North America into a Christian fundamentalist theocracy?
There is a symbiotic relationship between the Patriot/Christian Militia new world order-illuminati paranoids and the ritual abuse-mind control survivor/therapist cultists. (there are actually many direct connections between the two communities, demonstrated by the relationships between Gunderson, John DeCamp, Bo Gritz, Ken Adachi, Tim White, Brice Taylor, Ellen Lacter, Kathleen Sullivan, Paul Bonnaci,etc.)
The ritual abuse/mind control survivors derive their imaginary life histories from the mythologies of the NWO-Illuminati conspiracy theories of the Militias.
The ritual abuse/mind control survivors then function as "whistleblowers" - Hofstadter's "renegades" - for the NWO-Illuminati paranoid politics of the Militias. They function as "the living evidence", "proof", that the NWO-Illuminati conspiracy is reality and therefore that western society is hopelessly corrupted by secret societies composed of morally deranged satanic pedophile billionaires.
If that were really true, you see, it would mean that the only hope of escaping enslavement by invisible tyrannies would come from "morally righteous" people who understand "the truth" seizing control of our governments and public institutions. Or, the population could voluntarily turn over control to...the Dominionists! - with the Patriot Militias functioning as Inquisitor/religious police, rounding up all the secretly morally corrupt elements of our societies. Oh yea.
Anyone who thinks that the Patriots have been plastering the internet with ritual abuse-mind control survivor stories because they are "concerned about child abuse" is completely deluded! They do that as a propaganda & recruitment program. They hope these "survivor" stories will convince the naive average person that our institutions are hopelessly corrupted, and terrify them into joining (or at least becoming supportive of) local groups of heavily armed paranoids "for their own protection". And guess what? IT WORKS. It even works on some Progressives, apparently.
Some people who publicly trumpet being concerned about child abuse are actually exploiting that tragic issue to advance another agenda. This happens on both the Right and the Left, and it makes me furious.
For example, an alleged Progressive named Sander Hicks has been promoting his friend Nick Bryant's book "The Franklin Scandal". Bryant claims that the book is an expose of child trafficking, of rich and powerful men sexually exploiting vulnerable teens and then using their power and influence to corrupt the justice system into covering-up what they'd done.
Hicks claims to be promoting Bryant's book out of concern for abused children. I know that cannot be his real motivation, however, because Hicks has gone out of his way to promote "the cause" of not one but two CONVICTED PEDOPHILES and cast them as heroic whistleblowers!
I'm talking about Delmart Vreeland and Richard Taus. You can get their stories by googling them if you want.
The hypocrisy of someone who claims to be concerned about abused children casting pedophiles as heroes is just UNBELIEVABLE! Why would Hicks do this? Because both these persons claim to be government/intelligence agency whistleblowers exposing secret criminal conspiracies involving political leaders and intelligence agencies.
THAT is Sander Hicks real agenda - to find & promote some kind of dirt that could "discredit" our governments and public institutions in the eyes of the public. Hicks agenda, is to "discredit" governments and public institutions. That is what most of his writing and activism has been concerned with. NOT child welfare.
And that is why Sander Hicks is promoting Nick Bryant's book. NOT because Hicks is concerned about abused children - he wouldn't promote the cause of convicted pedophiles if he really was concerned about child abuse - but because The Franklin Case involves wealthy powerful men, law enforcement and government agencies being accused of corruption and pedophilic activity. Hicks promotes Bryant's book because it represents "dirt" that could "discredit" political leaders and public institutions.
If he was open & honest about his real motivation, I'd say - great, go for it! Exposing verifiable criminal misdeeds by politicians and government agencies is undeniably a good thing for society. But don't claim to be an advocate for abused children when you've promoted pedophiles as heroes.
I've talked about the satanic cult survivor mythology, but not the mind-control experiment survivor mythology. After the FBI's Ken Lanning revealed that the FBI could find no evidence of multigenerational child-abusing satanic cults, SRA as a cause of multiple personality disorder was discredited.
Colin Ross was making a killing promoting and treating MPD and weren't going to give up their golden goose, so he and his staff (such as Corydon Hammond) attempted to come to the rescue with a new "root cause" for MPD - CIA mind-control experimentation.
There's a grain of truth in that idea. The CIA really did finance mind-control experimentation in a variety of forms. They really did experiment with the possibility of creating agents who would have a second "personality" with no knowledge of their own status as a CIA operative. If they were captured while the secondary persona was activated, they couldn't betray themselves or the agency, was the idea. These experiments involved hypnosis as the means of generating a secondary persona, they had nothing to do with creating full-blown MPD via torturing little children.
The reality of these CIA funded experiments provided a plausible alternate explanation for the origin of MPD in Ross' patients. The fact that the CIA destroyed most of the records about these programs was extremely convenient, allowing an alleged victim to plausibly claim that there was no documentation of their victimization because the CIA had destroyed all the records.
But, that isn't really true. There ARE CIA funded mind-control experimentation survivors who have extensive documentation of their victimization. There are 77 Canadians who were victims of Ewan Cameron's CIA funded experimentation. Their identities are known, and their victimization so well documented that they were awarded compensation payments.
There is, however, NO evidence that any of these people;
- were raised in multigenerational satanist families with ties to the CIA
- had multiple personalities intentionally induced in them
- were used for prostitution, pornography, sex slavery or drug-running.
The reality of the Canadian mind-control experimentation survivors does not support the fantasies of the Brice Taylors, the Kathleen Sullivans or the Paul Bonnacis of the Extreme Abuse Survivor cult.