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Thread: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

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    Re: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

    Quote Originally Posted by OnWisconsin View Post
    12 step programs work 3% of the time. Thats not a very good batting average.
    Do you have a cite for that?

    Given the nature of AA, a lot will depend on how both the numerator and denominator are defined. Many people will come for a meeting or two and aren't even seen again. Is that person counted as a participant in AA? And what does it mean for AA to work - don't ever drink again? Etc. It's part of the reason there are no good stats that I've seen. It's probably lower than the AA touted number of around 40%, but IME far higher than 3%.

    FWIW, I fully support any approach that works. AA is sort of polarizing. Many AA folks are zealots for AA and scoff at alternatives, and there are a number of people who are vehemently opposed to AA. To me it's like taking a hard line position on weight loss, or 'fitness.' Some methods work well for some people and fail others miserably. Whatever it takes is great with me, and in the meantime there are many thousands in AA living pretty good lives sober. That's a good thing.
    Last edited by JasperL; 10-16-14 at 07:22 PM.

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    Re: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

    Quote Originally Posted by Crovax View Post
    its non denominational you can even claim your "higher power" is mother earth, im sure there are a few atheist that would admit that the earth/nature/the universe/physics is a power greater than themselves
    Keep equivocating over forced religious activities.
    He touched her over her bra and underpants, she says, and guided her hand to touch him over his underwear
    Quote Originally Posted by Lutherf View Post
    We’ll say what? Something like “nothing happened” ... Yeah, we might say something like that.

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    Re: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

    Quote Originally Posted by JasperL View Post
    But the placebos of all kinds often have 'substantial' effects.

    I was going to mention this earlier, but I accept the evidence that addiction is in part caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain and that a necessary step to long term recovery is fixing that imbalance so people feel more or less 'normal' when not using drugs. Time fixes some of these problems, but many unfortunate individuals deal with intense cravings years into recovery.

    I followed a program to chemically 'fix' the imbalances and it worked beautifully for me. I mentioned this to my doctor and he (and others) suggested that my 'cure' was effective merely because of the placebo effect. My response was I don't know and actually don't care about anything other than it worked for me and eliminated cravings, depression, etc. The effect was and is absolutely 'real' to me!

    I'm sure the same is true with belief in a Higher Power.
    Yes, the human brain has a strange effect on how the body heals. Merely believing you will get better sometimes actually makes you heal faster. But that speaks to the power of the human mind, not the power of God or the power of sugar pills.

    God, clearly, does not give a crap who prays when it comes to illness.
    He touched her over her bra and underpants, she says, and guided her hand to touch him over his underwear
    Quote Originally Posted by Lutherf View Post
    We’ll say what? Something like “nothing happened” ... Yeah, we might say something like that.

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    Re: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

    Quote Originally Posted by Luftwaffe View Post
    Part of me says "screw this asshole for trying to suck the government dry, it's his damn fault that he's in jail to begin with."

    The other part of me says "this **** needs to stop, we don't live in the Midieval Ages where you believe in God or get punished."

    At the end of the day he shouldn't get **** because he shouldn't be selling drugs like the inferior human he is.
    Right, even swearing an oath should be free of religion if that person wants it. In the Netherlands it is very normal. Even when the dutch versions of congress and senate swore allegiance to the king, they were given an option. They could either say that they promise and swear/declare or the can say "I swear as the almighty god is my witness".

    It may be strange that they swear allegiance to the king but before they do that, the king has sworn his allegiance to the country and the people of the kingdom. And even then, the members of congress and the senate are allowed not to partake in the swearing in ceremony. They already swore allegiance to the constitution so for it has no extra legal meaning. People who are republican (not as in the political party but the anti-kingdom republicans) do not have to swear allegiance to the king or queen.

    Freedom of religion should also include freedom to not believe in a religion.
    Former military man (and now babysitter of Donald Trump) John Kelly, is a big loud lying empty barrel!

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    Re: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

    Quote Originally Posted by WCH View Post
    There's a constant battle of good and evil, right and wrong, positive and negative going on inside every one of us. Call it what you want but, you better hope the good, right, positive power wins out.
    Yes, but stating that a power greater than yourself can restore your sanity and that you are powerless against your addiction is insanity IMHO, you are not powerless, you need to be empowered so that you yourself can defeat that evil inside of you. Now if you want to do that with the help of god then so be it, but it should not be a higher power but a higher power inside yourself.
    Former military man (and now babysitter of Donald Trump) John Kelly, is a big loud lying empty barrel!

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    Re: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter King View Post
    Yes, but stating that a power greater than yourself can restore your sanity and that you are powerless against your addiction is insanity IMHO, you are not powerless, you need to be empowered so that you yourself can defeat that evil inside of you. Now if you want to do that with the help of god then so be it, but it should not be a higher power but a higher power inside yourself.
    I think you're missing quite a bit about how AA is supposed to work, and does work in practice. It really is about empowering individuals to defeat their addiction, you just don't approve of a higher power being mentioned. I get that, and it's why I don't support mandatory AA for anyone. But as a practical matter, individuals rely on their own "higher power" AND for many some notion of God. It's not an either/or thing at all.

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    Re: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter King View Post
    Yes, but stating that a power greater than yourself can restore your sanity and that you are powerless against your addiction is insanity IMHO, you are not powerless, you need to be empowered so that you yourself can defeat that evil inside of you. Now if you want to do that with the help of god then so be it, but it should not be a higher power but a higher power inside yourself.
    It should come down to you but, that higher power inside of you is IMO....God.
    32 “Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. 33 But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.
    Matt. 10:32-33

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    Re: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

    Quote Originally Posted by JasperL View Post
    I think you're missing quite a bit about how AA is supposed to work, and does work in practice. It really is about empowering individuals to defeat their addiction, you just don't approve of a higher power being mentioned. I get that, and it's why I don't support mandatory AA for anyone. But as a practical matter, individuals rely on their own "higher power" AND for many some notion of God. It's not an either/or thing at all.
    Dealing with an addiction is a very personal and individual process. I worked with a sort of gamblers anonymous organization and we worked quite differently. There were 2 groups, 1 with the relations/family of the gambling addict lead by a woman (in our case) whose husband had been a gambling addict and the other group was the gamblers themselves and the 2 groups did not mix because both the groups were encouraged to speak out totally openly and only the people in the group itself got to hear what was being talked about in that group.

    The family/parents/loved ones (close loved ones) were being informed in how they were not to blame for the gambling and they were being given practical about how to talk to their gambling loved ones etc. and how they could keep an eye on changing behavior. In our group we were discussing why we gambled, how we can stop gambling, practical means to stop gambling etc. etc. etc.

    Every gambler was told to hand his or her bankcard/credit card to their spouse/father/mother because right at the beginning they were not to be trusted with that freedom. It was not mandatory but it was the best thing they could do for themselves. They had to work on regaining trust in themselves and trust of their loved ones. But the only person who could do something about that was the gambling addict him/herself and the group and group leaders where there to aid and help them. No person got the exact same help because every person had their own method used to help them.

    The government at that time was not taking gambling seriously enough. The government/leading gambling addiction specialists were focused on managing the gambling of a gambling addict, but that was BS. If he could have been taught to gamble with moderation that person would not have been a gambling addict in the first place. The process was that the gambler would go to the place where the course of gambling moderately was being given and were given a course book. After a few weeks they were being told to bring 25 dollars (and give their wallets/bankcards to the course instructor for safe keeping), go down to the local gambling casino where they were meant to change that money into denominations that were used in the gambling machines. They had to walk around there for an hour or so and then go to the cashier, change their money back in to big bills and then show that to the course instructor.

    That worked well for 1 week, the second week they took 25 dollars and their wallets but stashed and extra 50 in their socks/pockets etc. and then when they went to the casino they did not bother changing the 25 dollars but they changed the 50 dollars. They gambled for an hour and went back with their 25 as evidence for having been there without gambling.

    And that was the stupid thing, you cannot tell and addict he/she is going to learn to do their addictive behavior responsibly because they are unable. You do not tell the alcoholic that he/she can have 2 beers on weeknights and 3 in the weekends. That will work for a few weeks (if that) and after that he/she will be back to his/her bad old self. The same goes for drug users, etc. etc. etc. etc.

    Stopping with an addiction means stopping and not learning to live with ones bad behavior/addiction.
    Former military man (and now babysitter of Donald Trump) John Kelly, is a big loud lying empty barrel!

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    Re: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter King View Post
    Dealing with an addiction is a very personal and individual process. I worked with a sort of gamblers anonymous organization and we worked quite differently. There were 2 groups, 1 with the relations/family of the gambling addict lead by a woman (in our case) whose husband had been a gambling addict and the other group was the gamblers themselves and the 2 groups did not mix because both the groups were encouraged to speak out totally openly and only the people in the group itself got to hear what was being talked about in that group.
    ....
    And that was the stupid thing, you cannot tell and addict he/she is going to learn to do their addictive behavior responsibly because they are unable. You do not tell the alcoholic that he/she can have 2 beers on weeknights and 3 in the weekends. That will work for a few weeks (if that) and after that he/she will be back to his/her bad old self. The same goes for drug users, etc. etc. etc. etc.

    Stopping with an addiction means stopping and not learning to live with ones bad behavior/addiction.
    There is no doubt there is great variation in the approaches, in my case with AA. I went to many meetings only once because the approach didn't fit me, or I didn't fit with the people or the meeting was run by an AA nazi, etc.

    And I don't want to get into a long debate about 12 step programs - they work for some people, don't at all for many others, and for those it doesn't help, I genuinely wish them all the best with some other approach. But, for example, the way people here view Step 1 - powerless over alcohol - is just the admission that they can't handle alcohol, AT ALL. There is no cutting back, managing the drinking, etc. It's zero alcohol intake, period, for any reason. No cough syrup, no mouthwash, not one beer, not ever.

    So no one admits they have no control - the recurring point, every meeting, is there are NO EXCUSES. "Don't drink/drug. Your child dies, that's horrible, drinking will make it worse. You got fired, too bad, life will suck bad some days, get another job, which is easier to get and keep sober. Whatever it takes to not take the first is what you do. Here's what I (we) do..... Here's what helped ME...."

    It's forbidden in my region to talk TO anyone - "YOU must do this!" It's, "this worked for me, others here can try it if they want and if it works, great, if not, try something else. just don't drink." Religion/God/Higher Power is a big thing for maybe 2/3. For the rest, it's not part of the daily discussion.

    As an aside, there was an infamous (now) group called Moderation Management, which advocated controlled drinking with set limits. I read the book and we just laughed about it because it 'recommended' no more than FOUR drinks per day, or 14 per week. LMMFAO. People who could reliably handle that didn't need any program. The problem with addicts was 4 OFTEN turned into 12, and sometimes 20. Anyway, the woman founder quit, decided to go back to AA, then ended up getting into a car wreck, drunk, and killed the occupants of the other car..... So, yeah, I agree.

    And the thing is, I'm sure it's the same with gamblers being asked to play poker for pennies or something, I don't WANT to drink moderately. Never did - I like getting drunk. Nothing is better than ONE DRINK, by far. I imagine gamblers get the same amount of joy out of pretend "gambling" as an addict with a moderate amount of their drug of choice - nothing but the craving for the real thing.

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    Re: Atheist inmate settles for $1.95 million over 12-step drug rehab

    Quote Originally Posted by WCH View Post
    When you've lost your soul to addiction, who better to return it to you than God? Like you said, science can't do it.
    So are you saying that there are no alcoholics who are christians?

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