May 18, 2020

CultNEWS101 Articles: 5/18/2020

MLM's, Thought Reform, Video, Move, LDS, Jonestown

The Recovering Hunbot: Thought Reform Criteria in Multilevel Marketing

"A discussion of  John Lifton's thought reform criteria and how it relates to multilevel marketing.
MLM like any other high control group uses thought reform tactics that erode your critical thinking. Examining the criteria Lifton outlines helps to examine the destructive nature of multilevel marketing."

The Guardian: The day police bombed a city street: can scars of 1985 Move atrocity be healed?
"Frank Powell, a Philadelphia police officer who in 1985 was chief of the city's bomb disposal squad, remembers vividly the moment he was given his instructions. "Wow," he recalls thinking. "You want me to do that?"

On 13 May 1985 Powell was handed an army-style green satchel containing a bomb made of C-4 plastic explosives of the sort widely deployed in Vietnam. He boarded a state police helicopter, and took up his position balanced precariously on the skids of the aircraft.

"I can't remember being scared," he told the Guardian, "though I must have been."

At 5.27pm as the helicopter rose into a crystal-clear blue sky he carried out his orders. Flying over a largely African American residential neighborhood of west Philadelphia, he lined up his sights, lit the 45-second fuse with a military igniter and followed his orders.

"I reached out and I dropped it. Perfect. It was going right where it was supposed to go."

It was to lead to one of the great, largely forgotten, outrages of modern America

His target was the roof of 6221 Osage Avenue, a row house which at the time had 13 American citizens inside. They were all members of Move, a group which combined the black liberation struggle with back-to-nature environmentalism.

Each Move member took the last name Africa to signal their commitment to race equality as well as to each other as a family. For years they had been in a running battle with the Philadelphia authorities culminating that May in arrest warrants, for a range of offenses including "terroristic threats", "riot" and "disorderly conduct", being served and a standoff ensuing that ended with the dropping of Powell's bomb on to their house.

It led to one of the great, largely forgotten, outrages of modern America.

After the bomb struck, a fire took hold and began to spread. The police commissioner, Gregore Sambor, critically and fatally decided "to let the fire burn".

By the following morning 61 homes had been razed to ashes, leaving 250 Philadelphians destitute and homeless.

Only two of the 13 residents of the Move house got out alive.

The remaining 11, including five children aged seven to 13, were similarly reduced to ashes."

"President Russell M. Nelson wants Jesus Christ front and center not only in the name of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints but also in the faith's meetinghouses.

To emphasize that, he and his counselors in the governing First Presidency directed local lay leaders Monday to place artwork that depicts Christ himself — or Jesus ministering to others — in all church foyers and entryways.

That will be the only art allowed in those prime spots. Banished to other parts of the buildings will be landscape paintings, portraits or pictures of Latter-day Saint leaders, bulletin boards, tables, easels, missionary plaques and other displays."

"In 1978 David Netterville was a young combat controller stationed at Howard Air Force Base in Panama. On the morning of November 19, Netterville and seven others received a call from command telling them to pack a bag for at least 24 hours, with no information about where they were going or why. In later testimony, David would report being told to simply "get my butt in gear, pack my stuff, and get to the work section ASAP."

It was only later when airborne in a Hercules transport plane that he was told what was happening. A Californian congressman had been shot by a cult in the South American country of Guyana, and the team was being flown in to investigate. As David describes: "support was unknown and no further information was available. [We went in] totally blind, but willing."

What Netterville found on arrival, of course, was nightmarish.

In an ultra-remote swath of Guyanese jungle, the recon team found a small village of flimsy, makeshift buildings. Among these buildings were hundreds upon hundreds of bloated, decomposing bodies, fanned out upon the grass.

"An initial count was made of approximately 400 bodies and no survivors," he recalls. "But the count increased daily since many were stacked on top of each other… command staff kept upgrading the numbers from 400 to 500 to 700."

For first responders like David Netterville, there was chillingly little information available about what Jonestown was or what had happened there. They faced only the enormity of the tragedy, and the task of somehow getting all these dead U.S. citizens back to the States.

The name "Jonestown" has now been part of the public consciousness for 42 years. In those years, popular culture has scavenged the story for parts, giving us the band The Brian Jonestown Massacre and phrases like "drink the Kool-Aid." But when you look at these photos, and see the faces of people processing a mass suicide, you feel its weight. You realize anew how disturbing the whole thing really was."

News, Education, Intervention, Recovery to help families and friends understand and effectively respond to the complexity of a loved one's cult involvement. assists group members and their families make the sometimes difficult transition from coercion to renewed individual choice. news, links, resources. resources about cults, cultic groups, abusive relationships, movements, religions, political organizations and related topics.

Selection of articles for CultNEWS101 does not mean that Patrick Ryan or Joseph Kelly agree with the content. We provide information from many points of view in order to promote dialogue.

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