Found this online today… “Taylor’s first new prophecy revolves around the national debt. He goes on to say that Trump’s decreased regulations of the oil and gas industry will help slay the debt.”
Wait! Now it all makes sense! I have finally figured out Revelation 11, etc.
The two FaceBook pages are the Two Witnesses. They have power to block, intimidate and take down the FaceBook pages of their opponents and critics. Not only that, but Ron’s publicist can hack the computers of ANYONE who would dare mock or criticize PKG and their pages. This is the Great Tribulation: there will be much gnashing of teeth and visits to computer repair shops.
The PKG pages will operate for 42 months, until the Israeli Government internet security takes them down for exactly 84 hours. Then Ron’s god will fly into Jerusalem and set up 144,000 Facebook Pages. He will establish a new Operating System which will replace Windows, OSX and Linux. Social media peace will ensue and all hackers will be forced to work making pizzas at the Lake of Fire Pizza franchises.
Consider this scenario at the Lake of Fire Pizza:
Server: Is there a problem, sir?
Customer: This pizza is burnt!
Server: What did you expect?
For far too long we’ve been advising the Armstrongist leaders to repent. The alternative is… well… unpleasant to contemplate.
Deuteronomy 18:20 —
But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die.
Revelation 19:20 —
And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.
Revelation 22:5 —
For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
Hebrews 6:4-6 —
For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.
So here we have the False Prophets: Among them are Roderick Meredith, David Pack, Gerald Flurry and Ronald Weinland, along with dozens and even hundreds of others spouting prophetic nonsense in the Name of God — with churches, insultingly enough, named Church of God — based on British Israelism which has failed, illustrating quite pointedly that God did not send them, is not working with them and certainly doesn’t validate them with any success in their prognostications that they claim they are making in His Name. God has to be pretty ticked. He has declared the death penalty upon them — “that prophet shall die” [in the case of Gerald Flurry that’s a double entendre]. Furthermore, they are liars and will not be in the Kingdom of God, if we are to believe Revelation. And if we don’t, then why listen to these predatory hustlers at all? They are sorcerers, idolaters and love and make lies. Furthermore, if any think they will get a second chance in the second resurrection, the Apostle Paul [if, indeed, he is the author of Hebrews] makes it clear that they’ve had their chance (for quite a number of years — even decades) to embrace their endarkenment.
It gets really frustrating when Scripture so clearly describes these scoundrels in II Timothy 3 and then tells Christians everywhere, “from such turn away”. Both Roderick Meredith and David Pack claim that they have not committed a “major sin” since baptism. What would a major sin to them be, do pray tell? Having a romantic date with another guy? Is that it? Certainly, speaking lies in the Name of God would seem to be particularly heinous if it weren’t for the oppression they ply on their congregational prey. It gets to be pretty intense. You can’t go to the bathroom, no matter how bad you need to, during David Pack’s sermons? And Ronald Weinland — hey, he’s a convicted felon, convicted by a jury of his peers during prosecution by the United States Justice Department for Felony Income Tax Evasion. Assuredly, he, of all people, should sort of get the idea that he’s done something wrong, and, maybe, he might just consider that his prophecies which he wrote and published in books have failed.
We have tried and tried to get through to these thick-headed narcissistic morons to no avail. The Bible says… if you don’t repent, you are going to die. What part of that don’t you get? Are you all atheists? Don’t you believe that the Bible is the inspired Word of God? Your behavior more than suggests that you don’t believe and you don’t think that Scripture has any authority.
Here’s the deal: If you are right that God and the Bible don’t matter, logically speaking, you don’t matter either, because you claim you base all your teaching on God and the Bible. You are irrational and chaotic. You have no worth whatsoever.
And so it is, if the Words of the Book come to pass, as you scream with excruciating pain from the many stripes and are in abject terror as you plunge into the flames of the Lake of Fire with fourth degree burns, we will attempt to shout to you above the roar of the conflagration,
What did you expect?
Herbert Armstrong was the master of self-deception. Not only that, but he trained us all to be adept at self-deception. And self-deception is exactly why people stay with the Cult of Herbert Armstrong Mafia.
Watch this TEDx Event Presentation by Dr. Cortney S. Warren in her talk, “Honest Lies: The Psychology of Self-Deception”:
At the core, we lie to ourselves because we don’t have enough psychological strength to admit the truth and deal with the consequences that will follow. That said, understanding our self-deception is the most effective way to live a fulfilling life. For when we admit what we really are, we have the opportunity to change.
There are core strategies which we use to practice self-deception:
- Denial: Refusing to believe something is true, even though it is;
- Rationalization: Creating a reason to excuse ourselves;
- Projection: Taking an undesirable aspect of ourselves and ascribing it to someone else;
- Cognitive Distortions: Irrational ways in which we think;
- Polarizing Thinking: Thinking in extremes;
- Emotional Reasoning: Thinking that our feelings accurately reflect reality;
- Overgeneralization: Taking a single negative event as an infinite spiral of defeat.
From an existential perspective, we deceive ourselves to avoid the ‘Givens’ of life, the fundamental realities of “being human” that we must face:
- Death — we’re all going to die;
- Ultimate Aloneness — we were born as a single person housed in a solitary physical body;
- Meaninglessness — our lives are inherently meaningless unless we give them meaning;
- Freedom — we are responsible for ourselves because we have the freedom of choice.
To avoid these realities, we frequently lie to ourselves:
- Deferring responsibility for choices;
- Believing in ‘specialness’ so that there is a unique protection from harm;
- Compromising to meet cultural norms.
Self-deception leads to massive amounts of pain and regret. To avoid being honest, we frequently make choices with harmful consequences to ourselves and others — we may use drugs, alcohol, eat, shop, gamble, steal, lie, leave people or pass our emotional baggage down to those we love the most. Or, we may choose not to change even when we are miserable or causing profound harm to those around us. Looking back at life with regret is incredibly painful, because you can’t change your choices in the past.
When we don’t take full responsibility for who we are, we hurt ourselves and everyone around us.
The way to change is:
- self-awareness — become observers of ourselves;
- examine the contribution to the conflict in our lives;
- admit to insecurity and confront the choice.
Not changing when confronted with the truth is a choice. Although we cannot control the many circumstances we encounter in life, we are responsible for our reactions to all of them.
Confronting our self-deception is a lifelong journey. We change and the world offers us new opportunities to understand ourselves. There is always more to learn.
It is now time for those who embrace the Cult of Herbert Armstrong Mafia to be honest with themselves.
Here are just a few of the truths Armstrongists need to face:
Herbert Armstrong was not an apostle;
Herbert Armstrong was a false prophet;
Herbert Armstrong committed incest with his daughter for ten years at the beginning of his ministry and, therefore,
Herbert Armstrong was not actually converted, and,
Herbert Armstrong was never qualified to be a minister;
Herbert Armstrong is dead;
Herbert Armstrong knowingly allowed his son, Garner Ted Armstrong, to be second in command as the top evangelist, even though GTA was an adulterer, alcoholic boozer and a gambler;
There is no place of safety and there never will be (and Petra is an absolutely terrible place to try to survive);
British Israelism, as the key to prophecy, has been thoroughly debunked and no prophecy based on it will come true… ever — it’s extra Biblical;
The True History of The True Church was nothing of the kind, plagiarized from Ellen G. White and thoroughly, provably wrong, particularly about Waldensians supposedly keeping the Sabbath and Holydays (they considered themselves to be good Catholics);
The leaders of the major sects of the Cult of Herbert Armstrong Mafia have proved themselves inept and to be false prophets;
Jesus isn’t returning in your life time;
There may be tribulation, but the Great Tribulation won’t happen in your life time;
The Bible commands “from such turn away”;
There is no such thing as a Christian narcissist;
Armstrongism is a religion of physical rituals, not of spiritual content;
If you are an alcoholic, you must stop drinking or you will not just die badly, you may seriously injure and kill others;
If you are diabetic, you cannot drink alcohol;
If you are diabetic, you need to manage your condition because it’s not just going to ‘go away’;
Anointing for your chronic diseases will not make them go away;
There is not and never was any such thing as ‘second tithe’;
If you are a farmer and you try to keep the seventh year land Sabbath, you will either go broke, have to borrow money or lose your land because you simply won’t get double income in your sixth year because, just like the Feasts, the land Sabbath was given only to ancient Israelites in the land of Israel — the land ‘the Lord gaveth thee’ — under the Old Covenant only — a physical covenant for a physical people devoid of the Holy Spirit given promises of physical prosperity only;
The United States and British Commonwealth are not lost tribes of Israel, and, more importantly, none of the doom, devastation, destruction is going to occur because of their supposed sins against an ancient religion which was never given to them;
Your ministers are in it for the money and the ego trip — they are totally selfish and don’t really care about you;
Your ministers and leaders know nothing of morals and ethics;
Your ministers are terrible at counseling;
Your ministers are liars;
Your ministers don’t actually know how the Bible was put together, or if they do, they are lying about it;
You still can’t put new wine in old wineskins, even though that’s what Armstrongism is all about;
You don’t really know what other members of your sect really believe, even though you think you’ve known them for decades;
There is no loyalty — you can incur someone’s wrath and be disfellowshipped at any time;
Your family isn’t really safe;
You are wasting your money;
You are wasting your time;
You don’t really believe in science, you believe in magic;
By allowing someone else to define right and wrong for you, you’ve become a sociopath with a flexible adapted conscience;
No one is exactly what they seem;
It’s all quite insane.
Once you get through and eliminate these lies of your self-deception, you will still have a long way to go.
The only way to be free of your self-delusion is to stop feeding it by severing contact with those in the cult who are holding your mind hostage.
Here at the Painful Truth, we analyze trends and project them forward; we do not predict, prognosticate: We are a non prophet organization.
So are the nanocults of the Cult of Herbert Armstrong (CoHA), if you look at their record… well, yes, they do have false prophets, there is that, but that’s not what we mean.
Consider our amazement then when 2012 pretty much ended up in ways we projected it might, with the caveat that it was actually a lot worse and certainly screwier than we could have imagined, and around here, we have pretty fertile imaginations: Some of the CoHA nanocult leaders did things beyond all reason, providing entertainment for some and a great deal of pain and embarrassment for others. Many of the scenarios were truly jaw-dropping.
The end of 2012 provided us with the greatest breath-taking events. I suppose you could say that we should have foreseen that Dr. Robert Thiel was going to start his own church after he had left Roderick Meredith and the Living Church of God, but, again, we aren’t prophets: We took our last crystal ball, bored holes in it and went bowling.
To begin with, we would have never guessed the name, which is Continuing Church of God Overseer and successors, a corporation sole. Technically, the abbreviation would be CCoGOaSaCS (I think the spell checker just committed suicide), but in a rare act of mercy with an even rarer flash of insight, Dr. Bob decided to use CCoG, which is a good thing because ccg is taken and so is ccg.org — much to the chagrin of the Canadian Coast Guard. He’s already got a mailing address, where he encouraging LCG members to send tithes as they wend their way from the fold of Meredith to the fold of Thiel. We rather assume that Dr. Bob will certainly have the Feast Days and the Feasts all planned out, replete with five star hotel accommodations and such. Maybe in California. Maybe not.
No matter what, projecting out past trends, we would expect a great deal of dampened enthusiasm as Dr. Bob works out the Church Corporate thing. He’s the heart and sole of it all. He may or may not have been planning this for awhile. He apparently severed from his membership with Living July 14th, 2012, which is 10 days after the celebration of the Declaration of Independence, which probably has no real bearing on anything.
Dr. Bob does bring a few pluses to the table. For one thing, there’s that PhD in something or other he bought online from some outfit in India. He doesn’t say much about defending his thesis, which we rather think is 2012: The Rise of the Secret Sect. We know what you are thinking. Maybe, just maybe, the book was about him and the Continuing Church of God Overseer and successors, a corporation sole. We suspect that he may have had that in the back of his mind, seeing as though he got the idea from Doug Winail that Dr. Bob himself (speaking of himself in third person, which is kind of weird for a PhD guy and more like a Felon Mental Patient) is not just a prophet of God, but he is one of the two witnesses. We’re not sure how many sets of two witnesses there are, but there have to be hundreds at the minimum.
We think that Dr. Bob should see if Baron Karl zu Guttenberg might join him in collaboration. It would be a perfect pairing: Dr. Bob, God’s Prophet and one of the two witnesses and the Baron as the Beast of Revelation. Maybe the Baron could run the office using his Beast Powers, if he’s not too busy. Instead of “Headquarters” or “Home Office” they could call it something like “Castle Greyskull”.
Which brings us to the topic of Ronald Weinland, who is also part of a set of two witness, of the which, he is the active member and his wife is the Silent Witness. We’re not really sure how that works out. One would think that a witness who stands up for the Word of God would say something, but apparently not. We don’t pretend to know the mysterious ways of the CoHA and its nanocults. Now if we were to take a wild guess, we’d probably say that Ronald Weinland, as a convicted felon with the tracking bracelet of humility giving sermons over the Internet from his basement as a sub dude, is going to be safely ensconced in Federal Prison for three and a half years around about Groundhog’s Day, but we’ve seen delays before, so we aren’t going to put a large bet on that one. He ran afoul of the Internal Revenue Service for Income Tax Evasion and was convicted in Federal Court by a jury of his peers (even if he does not see them as such). You’d think that as God’s Prophet, he could have seen that coming, but you’d be wrong.
We can wade in reverse through the dregs of 2012 briefly: It was the year that the United Church of God, an International Association found that it’s income is stable, but insisted on a fast for the budget, requested by their new chairman of the board, Robin Weber. Expenses are up, probably because of hiring some ministers or something. The biggest percentage cut seems to be 44% off the International travel budget. This does not mean that the UCG, along with most of the others didn’t have their Christmas Family extravaganzas. The non Armstrongists have something like that every summer and it’s called “Super Sabbath”, but having the CoHA celebration at XMass is awfully suspiciously like some sort of pagan celebration they should really avoid, lest they have the appearance of evil. We project that they will have one of these in 2013 as well. We’ll see. Budget, you know. We suggest they cut the biggest expense of all and slash membership by 100%. Of course, the only reason that Robin Weber became chairman is that Melvin Rhodes stepped down and out at UCG because of some past undisclosed indiscretion.
No posting like this would be complete without mentioning false prophet Roderick Meredith at least twice (it’s like mentioning Hitler: It has to come up some time as some sort of law). Roderick Meredith prophesied, yeah, verily and forsooth, that the Price of Gasoline would drop so LCG members could keep the Feast. This was a major fail, especially in some areas, where, like in California, the gasoline prices went up to a record high just before the Feast and came down a few weeks later. We’re still looking for Meredith to fail predict the past which has already happened, but he just didn’t get the message. Now we aren’t saying the old fool hasn’t failed to predict the past accurately, we just don’t have an obvious example to point to. Living is still unable to escape being under the shadow of the Ratzman shooting and we can certainly say that attending could very well be hazardous to your health. We wonder if Dennis Luker is sizing the drapes. Thiel may have first dibs.
David Hulme with his Church of God, an International Community, apparently is on the skids. We wouldn’t have noticed, except for the posting at Banned! This is really small potatoes among the nanocults, folks.
Davy Pack is our personal favorite with his Restored Church of God. We’re not sure what it’s restored from, but they may want to do a little more remodel over there. Shovels have been turned for Davy’s theme park to rival Ambassador College, but the banks just weren’t buying it for the loans. Something about ROI and that’s even without the internal member letters and documents being leaked. We say, if you want to keep your secret, don’t tell anybody. Davy blabs. Probably an ego thing.
We’d mention CoGIC, but it’s so obscure nobody much ever pays attention to it. Apparently, in 2012, people paid even less attention to it, if that’s possible.
Jim Franks over at the Church of God, Worldwide Association was up to his chin with alligators draining the swamps again in 2012. The CoGWA still has not significant media presence, were forced to start media projects from scratch (although using Flipping Books on their website was a master stroke, even if the material is garbage). Some of the members are still visiting the UCG and really lack a commitment to one of the newer nanocults of the CoHA. Nevertheless, it does appear that our illustrious Mr. Franks did a bit of damage by exposing Melvin Rhodes to the United Leadership to force his exodus, proving once again that politics in the Armstrongist Churches of God is alive. Not alive and well. Just alive.
Craig White (Europe to sell Alaska to Russia for helping to invade the United States), “Apostle” Malm, E. W. King (with multiple insignificant generalistic type prophecies fulfilled), M. John Allen (Yahweh is a reptilian extraterrestrial from the planet Nibiru [no mention of whether he comes through the Stargate at the bottom of the ocean]), Gerald Flurry of the Philadelphia Church of God and a host of other colorful characters litter the dump of the CoHA nanocults.
After all of this, do you want to know what could possibly happen in 2013?
We think we see trends and we suspect they will continue:
1) Expect the unexpected;
2) It seems likely there will be more scandals to rock the CoHA nanocults;
3) More divisions may be coming (well, duh!);
4) Weirdness will increase;
5) Budgets will fall;
6) Hyperbole will increase;
7) Indecision will continue;
8) Problems won’t find solutions (but keep looking, innovation may not help, but it sure could be entertaining);
9) Very few things will be hidden for long, in spite of the best efforts of cover up;
10) Jesus will refuse to return in 2013 and won’t even bother to initiate the Great Tribulation as the start of the end of the end;
11) But you can be sure, someone will predict it anyway.
Will people keep the Feast of Tabernacles in 2013? Yes.
Will there be fewer people attending the Feast of Tabernacles in 2013? Yes.
Will it be more difficult for people to attend the Feast of Tabernacles in 2013? Yes.
Will it be more meaningless to attend the Feast of Tabernacles in 2013? Yes.
See! We’re not all negative!
We enjoyed rereading Daughter of Babylon: The True History of the Worldwide Church of God by Bruce Renehan again in 2012 (in the new Flipping Book version) from AmbassadorReports.com. We were reminded that the True History of The True Church is nothing of the kind, but pure rubbish stolen from Ellen G. White through the auspices of Dugger and Dodd. Bruce Renehan actually went to the effort to write to the Waldensian Society to prove they were never Sabbath Keepers, let alone kept the Feasts: They considered themselves good Catholics at the time and are now Protestant.
What is so unsettling about this is that during his research, he found others he had known in the Worldwide Church of God also searching the archives. Many of them were or had been ministers. They all knew that the History was a lie, but continued to teach it as if it were true.
This is the magic of Armstrongism in the Cult of Herbert Armstrong in the nanocults: They know they are wrong — totally wrong, but they teach and preach it anyway. By this time, they all know that British Israelism is pure rubbish, easily scientifically disproved once and for all, but they still hold to the Herbert Armstrong fallacy that “British Israelism is the Key to Prophecy”. You can see how that worked out: Herbert Armstrong was a false prophet and so are they all.
They also know that their teaching on tithing cannot be supported Scripturally. Moreover, because there is no such thing as a “second tithe” (look it up in an exhaustive concordance — we’ll wait), there is no funding at all to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. You are on your own time and money on that one. And yes, it could be a blessing, if it weren’t for all those doomsday sermons based on British Israelism you hear in Feast sermons to addle your brain. Everywhere you look, the cult religion falls apart. There is no viability in it at all.
Armstrongism is a purely physical ceremonial cult religion which was the only thing a non spiritual Herbert Armstrong could understand in his ego and greed as a failed ad copy writer going through a psychotic break he interpreted as a religious conversion. He admitted in his Autobiography that he could go weeks at a time being “off” and unable to produce anything and then having a burst of energy to be able to do “brilliant” work. Anyone who owns a DSM-IV ought to be able to suss that one out as bipolar disease manic-depressive illness. This is not to say he wasn’t a sociopath as well, having, as it were, an adaptive conscience which enabled him to lie successfully as the basis of his “Executive Ability”.
With this background, his “descendants” in this dead end evolution at the shallow end of the gene pool populated with a crowded community of alpha males looking to be top banana, having cemented their Folie à deux permanently into a distorted perception of cult mentality, went forth with their delusions and hypocrisies to form their own cult organizations with them in control with no integrity and no accountability — knowing perfectly well that what they taught was pure unadulterated recycled swill.
As the realization of this dawns, you can rest assured that there is not one shred of possibility to trust these men. None. You cannot trust them. They are unreliable. They just make up stuff. What’s so maddening is that we all can prove that they just make up stuff which has no reality whatsoever and they can perfectly well ignore the dissidents. In some cases, they even threaten those who tell the truth. They have a lot of incentive to keep the lies in place. It is their ego, their salary and their retirement. It is their power base.
And so it is no stretch of the imagination at all and take does not take a rocket scientist or nuclear physicist (with a real PhD and experience working with the HADRON collider) to understand that this is all going to continue into 2013. They will lie to you and take your money.
These are the trends we think we see.
Nevertheless, if you are a member in the Armstrongist churches of God, you may just want to do yourself a favor and skip 2013.
From the standpoint of the Memorial Day Weekend in the United States, May 26 – 28, 2012, many former members of the Armstrongist Churches of God have questions: How does an obviously insane lying false prophet con men become so entrenched in a cult like the PKG and why do people continue to follow him even though it should be obvious that he has failed spectacularly.
As we introduce the answers anticipated by puzzled people, we call attention to the Armstrongist Venn Chart above. Some people may say, “Are you serious?” and “That can’t possibly be true!”. We are quite serious and it is true, but it does require an explanation.
Venn Charts are graphic representations of the intersection, overlap and exclusion of mathematically based sets. In this case, we represent the intersection of the Abuser, the Narcissistic Psychopath and Liar. At the region these three sets intersect, we find the Armstrongist Church of God Minister. While an initial skepticism is anticipated, we will go through the reasoning process to explain the conclusion.
First, we want to make it clear that every major problem in the Armstrongist Churches of God came originally from Herbert Armstrong. These problems are rooted in the narcissistic personality disorder of Herbert Armstrong where he had no empathy for his followers. It should further be noted that he had a set of delusions now thoroughly disproved which formed the “collective conscience” of the basic church cult. At the center of the delusions was British Israelism, the proposition that the United States and British Commonwealth are supposed lost tribes of Israel and that British Israelism is the Key to Prophecy for the understanding of all key events to follow. This heresy of a preposterous science fiction style alternative earth history was and is indeed the Key to the failed prophecies of the Armstrongist ministry and leaders from the very beginning in the Radio Church of God starting with Herbert Armstrong, following down to this very day, where Ronald Weinland has prophesied that Jesus Christ will return this weekend. British Israelism is at the heart of it all and it completely invalidates all the teachings of the Armstrongist Churches of God.
The delusions were extended through the silly history of the church stolen from Dugger and Dodd who plagiarized it from Ellen G. White who just made up the whole thing. We know and can prove that the Waldensians considered themselves good Catholics and nothing more, never kept the Sabbath, let alone the Holydays. This “True History of The True Church” was nothing of the kind. It is thoroughly debunked and has been long rejected by the original Church of God Seventh Day. In fact, The Church of God Seventh Day had an article showing the folly of British Israelism in The Bible Advocate in this past year.
Unfortunately, the mind set is obsessive and the current members of the Armstrongist Churches of God simply refuse to look at the truth, let alone accept it, particularly those following Ronald Weinland in the CoG-PKG.
A regular contributor to this forum mentioned in a posting that the military made him a psychopath. This stems from the misunderstanding of the difference between a psychopath and sociopath — a distinction which is important to make because the goal of all major entities today, including the Military, Corporations, Academia, Government and Religious Corporations is to produce sociopaths to run them.
A psychopath has three major components [those who are interested in the details may check Snakes in Suits by Dr. Paul Babiak and Dr. Robert Hare]: Narcissism encompassing a complete lack of empathy, being devoid of conscience and game playing. Psychopaths have a cycle of three acts: Assessment, Execution and Abandonment. The first step of Execution is to wreck the credibility of those who can expose the con for what it is. Psychopaths love to play games and cut it close in brinkmanship to see just how far they can push their “mark”.
Sociopaths, by contrast, usually don’t actively play games, but more important have something called a “conditional conscience”. This “conditional conscience” is extremely important because it sets the bounds of what the Sociopath generally will do and won’t do. An example of this is the Mafia where any illegal or immoral act may be committed from prostitution, murder, drug trafficking to identity theft, upon those outside the Mafia. The “conditional conscience” is endemic to protect the Mafia itself and such activities are severely proscribed from being transacted against the internal members of the Mafia.
This is important, because of issues of loyalty which underlie the core basis of a group. In the military, for example, the soldiers have their conscience suspended to go out and kill the enemy, but if the military goes too far and produces psychopaths instead of sociopaths, there will be a discipline problem and internal chaos will result. The same principles apply to Corporations, Academia, Government and particularly Cult Religions. Certainly, the end justifies the means, but the Leader is sacrosanct, raised to the level of a saint or even a god; his lieutenants also have a great deal of prestige for the purposes of group survival and stability.
Thus it is that Herbert Armstrong established Ambassador College for the effective generation of Sociopaths. Given the characteristics of Sociopaths and having had Herbert Armstrong as the first Mafia Don, the success of a consistent generation of Sociopaths to “do the Work” is consumate. It was an amazing job to take moral, even decent students entering the machine in their freshman year and to have their consciences turned and burned into conditional ones in four short years. Delusion, fear, guilt, avarice and many other clever devices were used to transform simple students into polished socially ept attractive Sociopaths.
The real problem was that the world has changed and eventually, the one holding the entire cult together with the force of his will died. The 700+ cults are having difficulty with the competition from Sociopaths within and outside the Armstrongist “community” in at “dog eat dog” world of survival of the fittest. Evolution has left Armstrongists in entropy.
Sociopaths and psychopaths traditionally have poor behavioral controls. This is well exhibited in the temper of Roderick Meredith or Don Haney. This is further degraded precipitously by temptations: Both money and narcissistic appealing ego stroking are nearly irresistible to those who have been brain washed into the thinking “quality” of things is superior to actual intangible values. It is no accident that there is a heavy dependence on rigid rituals: What to wear to church, what you can and can’t do on the Sabbath and Feast Days, what percentage of your income you give and for what purposes, what you can and cannot eat and so forth. These are set as limits for the Sociopath “contextual conscience” because making real moral and ethical choices can be quite confusing to the Sociopath. When in doubt, have an explanation for every little thing and have rules which can be remembered easily (or better, written and posted by the door).
As the personal restrictions were lifted from those who were under the Draconian and arbitrary control of Herbert Armstrong after he died, those who had sufficient power threw off the shackles to indulge themselves to wallow in the new freedom from behavior controls and restrictions. There was War. As things sorted themselves out, many became leaders in their own right with a fiefdom of their own to be absolute gods over the hapless and often clueless sheople.
Abuse abounds in such venues as both assault and neglect. Abuse may simply be a matter of collateral damage of self serving self interest amongst the narcissists in power who really don’t care much about anyone but themselves.
Whether conscious of it or not, those in power have been liars from the beginning. Since those of us in an Anti Armstrongist role have exposed the fraudulence of the lies, particularly in the last two years, the ministry and administration has no excuse and at some level know the truth, but they continue to lie to you and take your money.
These are only part of the temptations they face and they yield to them, thus passing from Sociopath to the games playing psychopath role.
There is one more factor to complete the picture of our Venn Graph: A new term known as “Psychopath by Day”.
This should be familiar — at least in principle — to those who have read “Moral Mazes” by Robert Jackall. As a mid manager said in an interview for the book, what is right and moral is what the guy above you wants from you. That is to say, a “conditional conscience” loyal to the leadership in the hierarchy.
This is made possible by bracketing misdeeds through compartmentalization. Thus a CEO can lie, steal, even murder, pollute the world, outsource, destroy careers and the competition, then go home, be a wonderful father, husband, sit down to tea with the utmost social graces and recycle. Make no mistake: Many of the Armstrongist Ministers are monsters, but can appear pleasant and affable to those who may have impact on their agenda. It should also be pointed out that neurology research has demonstrated that those who deliberately lie actively destroy portions of their brains to make it into white mental mush. This, in turn, makes it easier to practice deception effectively. Being able to practice deception and lie convincingly is called “Executive Ability”. In recent studies, it has been shown that these “Executive Abilities” stem from childhood and set when children learn to lie effectively. So remember, the higher the rank of the minister, the more “Executive Ability” he has, and it is likely you can determine exactly how much he has if you were able to be privy to his brain scans (which would also reveal tangibly whether he is a psychopath or not).
Thus we validate our Venn Diagram.
The Venn Diagram also explains such people as Ronald Weinland.
But what of the followers?
We will cover that next time in Part II.