Larry Sarner and Monica Pignotti: Quackery for Palin!
Larry Sarner and Monica Pignotti join forces to support Sarah Palin's "nontraditional" scientific views and help her future political ambitions.
The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) flourished under the Bush Administration.
Big Oil and Big Tobacco could do no wrong, and, when they did, CEI was handed a lot of money to cover it up.
Those days are over. Saudi Arabia is worried about competition from oil producers such as Russia, Iran, Azerbaijan, and Kazakhstan. They want nothing to do with OPEC.
Tobacco's always been a losing proposition.
So where does CEI turn for money? After all, they have bills to pay down there.
The answer: Scientology and Sarah Palin!
Scientology, you say? Yes, Scientology, not as unlikely as it seems.
Scientology was built on junk science. Xenu, the galactic tyrant, dropping hydrogen bombs on Hawaii. Man evolving from clams. Radiation lurking in fat cells. Thought having mass. Calculus doesn't work, and it is part of a black magic operation anyway.
Strange stuff, to be sure, but no stranger than some of the ideas CEI has pushed. DDT-makes you live longer. There is no global warming. Trees pollute more than cars. Heating a gas makes it heavier.
CEI employs people with the job title "expert" when "spin doctor" would be more appropriate. Some of the main "experts" at CEI are John Berlau, Myron Ebell, Marlo Lewis, Greg Conko, and Clyde Wayne Crews.
Scientology is having problems right now. Its high school dropout leader, David Miscavige, abused staff members physically and the practice spread throughout Scientology. A few people may be gullible enough to believe that Xenu unleashed teleporting cats on the "loyal officers" but who wants to be slapped?
Scientology also has a long history of opposition to psychiatry. Thomas Szasz, though not a Scientologist, shares this belief, and has been supportive of Scientology.
Rushing to defend Szasz is Jacob Sullum, of Reason Magazine. Reason is closely affiliated with CEI, and this, of course, is the beginning of the latest plot at the Competitive Enterprise Institute-repairing Scientology's image.
The plan seems to be systematic propaganda attacks on selected mental health professionals. Sadly, they have targeted those who specialize in helping orphans. What is Scientology's problem?
Through Sullum and Szasz, Ebell and Berlau have enlisted quite a cast of players.
First, Jean Mercer. She's a psychologist, but has never held a license to practice, and has never seen a patient. She has no practical experience, but she seems to be the best they can do. Mercer runs a blog on Psychology Today. When people came to the blog with honest questions about Mercer's background and affiliations, she resorted to censorship!
Mercer collaborates with Larry Sarner. Sarner is very interesting. Sarner tried his hand at inventing voting machines. The voting machines did not work, and the result was a financial scandal. It was not as big as the Bernie Madoff fiasco, but the potential was there. One of Sarner's "victims" was Peter Paul Luce, son of Henry Luce. Why do we mention this? Well, Scientology L. Ron Hubbard claimed that Henry Luce and his "black magic organization" invented calculus!
Sarner and his wife, Linda Rosa, run a blog on child torture. Yes, child torture, and there's little doubt they'll soon enlist Lynndie England and Alberto Gonzales as guest bloggers.
Then there's Monica Pignotti, another very interesting person. She was a Scientologist, but, to her credit, she abandoned it. Some time after abandoning Scientology, she became a well paid practitioner of Roger Callahan's "Thought Field Therapy" and "Voice Technology." Like Scientology, these are very expensive "secret methods" for diagnosing and curing diseases.
Pignotti abandoned Callahan, apparently to collaborate with Mercer, Sarner, and Rosa. She's no stranger to CEI, though. At one point she participated in a lawsuit with Andrew Langer. Langer, an outspoken opponent of free speech and dedicated supporter of John Berlau, left CEI to for his own think tank, the Institute for Liberty.
Preliminary news reports suggest that Langer will be stepping down from the Institute for Liberty to work on the Sarah Palin 2012 campaign-another surefire losing proposition for Langer!
Charly D. Miller describes herself as a retired paramedic, author, and consultant. Her website contains material Larry Sarner calls "incisive" but others find it merely insipid.
You may have trouble finding her work, as it often contains copyright violations, and the owners have forced her to remove it from the site.
Last, but not least, Brooke Oberwetter. Does the name sound familiar? Her father, James, was George Bush's ambassador to Saudi Arabia! She left CEI to establish "DC Signal" which is a telecommunications policy consultancy. Since there's not a lot of money to be made ghostwriting outgoing voicemails, DC Signal seems ideally positioned to coordinate the Scientology-CEI project.
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