10 Dec 2017

Sophistry and Snake Oil

 
By Gi Linda.

“Sophistry” is perverted wisdom; a subtle, tricky, superficially plausible, but generally fallacious method of reasoning that seems true and sounds convincing but is actually deliberately misleading.

In Greece, c.5BC, the sophists were itinerant intellectuals and paid mentors who rejected moral absolutes, teaching that justice comes from dominance of the strongest. They used spurious arguments and rhetorical persuasion to gain influence for their clients. 


Through Plato and Aristotle, sophistry came to mean the deliberate use of fallacious reasoning, intellectual charlatanism and moral unscrupulousness.

In today’s world of commerce-driven screen-media where distinction between fantasy and reality is irrelevant, the word may be forgotten, yet sophistry is widely practiced in pursuit of  power, privilege and profit.

The most successful sophists who entangle their prey in a self-interested matrix of lies tend to also exhibit extreme narcissist and psychopathic tendencies.

The dominating drive for personal satisfaction feeds greed and stunts development of humane qualities such as integrity, kindness, remorse and empathy. Those who habitually practice deceptive sophistry cultivate a slick veneer of smirking sincerity greased by flattery that lures and hooks the undiscerning. Truth is mocked and compassion is exploited as weakness.  Deceived victims are devalued, discredited and discarded.


This story of two contemporary sophists began in 2013 with a false narrative established by “Truthology Foundation” at “Freedom Summits” where Mark Darwin offered to “set you free from the Money Game”

Mark Darwin - Truthology
Darwin was teaching clients and followers how to defeat the law by using the dominance of clever argumentation. In a 2014 Truthology email Darwin claimed:

“You can be assured that Mark is a very dynamic, charismatic individual and his seminars are entertaining, engaging, and hilarious at times and oftentimes life-changing for those attending…  Thats right we Teach YOU how to do it and finally be FREE from Their system !!!” 

“Truthology” was marketed online as “a truth and awareness site, and service provider that helps the people… We assist you to be free from the shackles of money stress, the debt trap, how to lawfully take on the banks, challenge fines and infringements, and how to stop paying taxes… and much, much more…"

"What Mark had discovered was so liberating, empowering and life-changing that he felt a deep, overwhelming desire to help other people.”

This “deep, overwhelming desire to help other people” led Mark Darwin and Adrian Brennock in 2014 to invite selected” investors, as supposed co-owners of a 640 acre property at Mt Burrell, NSW, to pay large amounts of their money into Darwin's bank account held in trust by Wroth Wall Lawyers. But the land-share narrative was false.

Investors whose naive, misplaced trust was betrayed became victims of this snake-oil sophistry and lost life savings, inheritances, pension funds and homes.

In 2015, purchase of the land should have been made by Darwin and Brennock with a Community Association providing purchase money investors shared proprietary rights as promised, but instead, the land was dishonorably acquired by a private company. Adrian Brennock, as self-appointed director, established his personal ownership of the property by holding a single $1 share.

This bait-n-switch sophistry was morally and ethically unconscionable leaving angry investors defrauded, but Brennock's snatching of the property from those who paid for it was ostensibly legal.

Investors who had been invited in 2014-15 by Darwin and Brennock into the first supposed “land-share community” were evicted from the land in 2016-17 without return of investment. Brennock is now attempting a pre-positioned transfer of the land asset in a phoenix move with the help of Vincents Chartered Accountants.

The “Bhula Bhula Village Community” scam was first exposed in October 2016 in “The Truth About Bhula Bhula” published in the Nimbin GoodTimes, revealing details of the land-share investment scam.

With their false narrative exposed, Darwin and Brennock removed the  “Truthology,” “Freedom Summits” and “Bhula Bhula Village Community” websites and switched their business and social networking name to “Rainmaker Eco Investments” inviting “ethical investments” in the same land-share scam, but at a higher price.

By 2016 Darwin and Brennock had expanded their land-share scam to the adjoining 3,000-acre property owned by Peter van Lieshout, using the name “Mount Warning Eco Village.”

The blog "Mount Warning Eco Village - A Warning" is published by the "Association of Investors Defrauded by Darwin" to document our experience and expose Darwin / Brennock's land-share scam, in the public interest.

Darwin and Brennock, facing criminal and civil charges by the Association of Defrauded Investors,  failed in 2017 with two applications to NSW Supreme Court for urgent injunctions to force removal of the blogs exposing their scam.

In November 2017 they changed the name of their venture from "Mount Warning Eco Village" to “Nightcap Village” then to “Nightcap on Minjungbal”

The “Truthology” website has recently been revived, no longer mendaciously offering services as a “beacon of truth in a sea of lies”, but now anonymously offering help in making superannuation investments.

As discredited sophists adopting various chameleon façades to pretend a more reputable appearance, Darwin and Brennock have devised more false narratives to explain the increasing reluctance of new investors to buy into their snake-oil scam.

After it was discovered in 2015 that investors in the first supposed "land-share community" had been defrauded and that multiple occupancy was not permitted on the land they had paid for, those who demanded accountability were defamed with false narratives and blamed for the failure of the “community”

Ongoing ad hominem attacks against “detractors,” are combined with intimidating threats, malicious harassment and stalking.  The false accusations include incorrect and misleading accounts of ongoing litigation. Vicious character assassinations are spread locally, online and have been presented in perjured affidavits to the courts.

Sophistry does not require that any argument be true or supported by evidence, only that it sounds convincing and is believed. Entranced by snake oil narratives, the credulous are deceived, betrayed and left without feasible legal recourse.

The contemptuous sophists, bloated with infusions of “coin” dishonorably gained by denying defrauded investors their equitable rights, scoff and mock their victims in sickening ritual celebration of their apparently unrestrained ability to profit by deception.

However, with their eyes now cast on even more ambitious empires and a minor celebrity, Tyler Tolman, ingenuously vouching for their authenticity, Darwin, Brennock and their accomplices are now encountering opponents who are highly motivated to bite back against those who attempt to pervert justice by domination of specious argumentation.




1 Dec 2017

Truthology / Freedom Summits News

By Gi Linda -
"Truth is irrelevant to Truthology; the important thing is that the false narrative of the moment should be believed long enough for a bank transfer to enrich the coin-hungry coffers of the resuscitated "Truthology" cabal." 

Launching "Nightcap on Minjungbal -- the World's Largest Holistic Village", "Nightcap Village News" sent the following announcement to a mailing list promoting "Truthology" and "Freedom Summits": "We've lost our way as humans, which is why we believe we need to recreate ‘The Village’". 

 Addressed by an anonymous author to a Truthology / Freedom Summits mailing list, Nightcap Village News  invites those disaffected with the dysfunctional establishment to join a community venture "to demonstrate a better way of living":

"Hi everyone
You’ve probably all been wondering what we’ve been up to? Well, a lot! ... we decided to look at some more positive and proactive ways to live a harmonious and satisfying life..."

Probably everyone is wondering who has been up to such a lot. Recipients of the newsletter who have followed Truthology and Freedom Summits since they emerged in 2013 know very well the identities of the notorious litigious "Freemen" whose Sovereignty Cult used Truthology in 2015 as a mendacious front to divest ingenuous investors of their life savings.

For those new to the land-share scam they are pushing, we'll adopt familiar nicknames used by those defrauded  by Truthology's terrible two: the deceptive marketing maestro "Romeo" with money-grubbing flat-earth promoter  "Jimmy the Maggot," assisted by the "Bully-Bully Boyz".


In 2016 the Truthology and Freedom Summit websites, Facebook pages and most Truthology YouTube videos were scrubbed after the Nimbin GoodTimes published "The Truth About Bhula Bhula" exposing the land-share scam that left 21 investors in "Bhula Bhula Village Community,"  including myself, defrauded of over $1.5 million.

Not to be deterred by local bad press, Romeo, Jimmy the Maggot and the Bully-Bully Boyz filed defamation charges against the publisher and against myself, author of the article, and changed their public front from Truthology, Freedom Summits and Bhula Bhula Village Community to "Rainmaker Eco Investments" which acquired Mt Burrell Commercial property by borrowing, filtching and leveraging off the investors who were defrauded in the first land-share scam.

Rainmaker Eco was then linked with "Mount Warning Eco Village", soliciting finance for a second attempted "community" on environmentally protected land, again without development approval in place and without lodging a DA application. 


Jimmy the Maggot also associated with a local pot grower holding an industrial hemp license and became director of the CIA, "Cannabis Industries Australia". This company, run by the BB Boyz, falsely claims to have a medical cannabis license while selling shares and soliciting finance in a non-existent "Nimbin University".

Mount Warning Eco Village land-share scam and Cannabis Industries Australia medical cannabis scam were exposed in blogs by the "Association of Investors Defrauded by Darwin". In retaliation, the Truthology gang charged me, as blog author, in NSW Supreme Court with injurious falsehood, also lodging two urgent injunctions attempting to gag free speech and have the blogs removed. After eight hearing with their false charges challenged by a defence of truth, both their injunctions failed; the blogs remain live and detailed accounts of events can be found in the archives.

After the land-share scam and Cannabis Industries Australia medical cannabis scam were exposed in blogs, Mount Warning Eco Village  was morphed by the "Truthology" gang into "Nightcap Village", and now into "Nightcap on Minjungbal -- the World's Largest Holistic Village".

Nightcap Village News of "the Community’s plans moving forward" continues:

For the past few years, we have been working very hard on establishing ‘Intentional-Conscious-Communities’ and have had to deal with many issues and detractors trying to stop this amazing vision from becoming a reality... but we have prevailed and are excited to introduce our first big development, which is nestled in the foothills of Mount Warning. It’s set upon more than 4,000 lush acres of incredibly gorgeous countryside..."

In reality, the "detractors trying to stop this amazing vision from becoming a reality" are actually defrauded investors in Truthology's first "Intentional-Conscious-Community" simply attempting on a tilted stage to achieve restitution.

"Ambassador" Tyler Tolman

"Many of you who attended our Freedom Summits in around 2014 will remember International Health Coach Tyler Tolman, son of Don Tolman. Well Tyler has taken a place within the community, and is helping promote it to his awesome tribe of health-conscious beings. This works really well for us at NightCap Village, as we want to foster and support a healthy, sustainable and ‘do-no-harm’ essence throughout the Community. Many of Tyler’s tribe has already joined us and we feel blessed to have his support."
How could such a healthy-happy venture soliciting money be dodgy when vouched for by a sincere, smiling minor celebrity?

Obviously it doesn't matter to Tyler Tolman that trusting investors have been defrauded along the way; the great vision for Intentional-Conscious-Communities is so important to the visionaries that a few casualties can silently be swept aside. Ambassador Tyler’s "inspirational introduction to the Community" is pink lipstick on piglets.

Intentional-Conscious-Communities
 
Potential investors are invited to take an exciting tour of the property where Truthology is advertising Nightcap Village, we are told:

"Becoming involved in this awesome project can look many different ways. You can live there, or build to rent out to other people, once all of the relevant approvals are in place... There are also more than 600 acres of maturing Blackbutt Forests which can be used to build your dream home/cabin..."

"Relevant approvals" are not in place, no development application has yet been lodged and the enthusiastic marketers do not even own the land. 
 
The Truthology website, removed after exposure of the land-share scam in 2016 has now been revived with an unidentified "specialist" offering advice on superannuation investment:

"I believe that Law helps to get an expert advice on your financial matters like practical and sound legal advice. As a law specialist, I always try to give excellent advice to my readers. I helped so many readers with their accounting related issues such as taxes and expert advice on maintain the budget, record and assist individuals from paying extra taxes. Through this website, I like to share my experience with all and always happy to answers any query."

Recognition of the hurt and harm caused by their earlier developments wouldn't look too good in the sales pitch, but, with defrauded investors filing both civil and criminal charges to achieve restitution, the unhealed wounds of previous failed "Intentional-Conscious-Communities" do not so conveniently go away.

Truth is irrelevant to Truthology; the important thing is that the false narrative of the moment should be believed long enough for a bank transfer to enrich the coin-hungry coffers of  the resuscitated "Truthology" cabal. So, as Romeo invites:

"If this excites you in any way… Be part of a tribe that wants to demonstrate a better way to live."




Blessing the Enemy


“Justice is turned away backward and righteousness stands far off, for truth has fallen in the streets and honor is repelled. Truth is lacking and one who departs from evil becomes its prey. The Lord saw, displeased that there was no justice, and was amazed that no-one would intercede. Then the Lord’s own arm brought triumph… Wrapped in zeal as a cloak, according to their deeds, so will He repay: Wrath to His adversaries and repayment to His enemies.” Isaiah 59