An Open letter to all those identifying themselves as

Steiner/Waldorf Critics.


Update

Since this letter was published, Thetis Mercurio has revealed herself to be Melanie Byng from Devon.




This letter to Steiner critics seeks answers to the following questions:


1. Do the critics generally approve of the aggressive behaviour of some critics towards people who’ve had negative experiences of the Steiner movement but whose methods may not be understood?


2. Do these people who apparently see themselves as gatekeepers of Steiner criticism actually represent the views of all critics?


We unfortunately have to report the fact that we have observed and experienced both passive aggression arising out of a self-protective “need” for anonymity which makes it very hard to call someone to account, and active aggression, which seeks to destroy that which it says it does not understand, by means of public mobbing behaviour.


Either of these forces could have a very negative effect on anyone, but especially on families coming out of damaging scenarios at Steiner schools, where they experienced the schools’ cultish, xenophobic, and often brutish behaviour.  Finding such aggression among those apparently ‘critical’ of the awful behaviour of Steiner schools, could very well become a wounding force even worse than the original, due to the secondary nature of the wounding together with a reasonable expectation of finding, among those claiming to be critical of Steiner education, at least a fair hearing.


From a loose network of people supposedly dedicated to stopping abuse and indoctrination? We think so.


But in the Steiner critics, these Luciferocious tendencies are not even operating alone, but together.  We are now in the unfortunate position of being able to attest to that effect, where Steiner critics have publicly mobbed a family because their friend, whether they knew it or not, needed to hide behind anonymity, having already duffed the family up in private.


It has been a shocking experience, to say the least, and resembles nothing more strikingly than the behaviour of the Steiner School our kids went to. The anonymous critic displayed the same seductive, grooming types of behaviour that we have had to document at the school and the public mobbing was full of the same xenophobic projections that the school dished out, not caring how weak the logic and only intending to eject the “irritant” who wouldn’t simply toe the line. It has been a devastating combination.


It is shocking to have to flag up such behaviours in the critics, but it gets worse because in mobbing us, Alicia Hamberg has clearly positioned herself as a protector of Steiner Critics generally, with significant influence and the apparent power to “endorse” projects.  In banning us and professing the need to warn others about us; she has acted as a Gatekeeper.


Likewise the anonymous “Thetis Mercurio” has been happy to be a kind of public face of Steiner criticism, if that isn't a conundrum! Yet her syrupy welcoming of distressed newcomers, all conducted through a pseudonym, disguises the fact that other things are going on in the background. So abusive is this combination, not only to adults, but also to children, that we sincerely believe that the only value in our recent experience is that we can now flag it up to others as another ‘hole in the road‘ for them to avoid.


The only thing we don’t know is whether the other critics actually do buy into it, hence this letter.  We are not prepared to take Alicia Hamberg’s word for her power to speak for all critics and whether or not we classify any critics mentioned here as Gatekeepers will depend solely on the responses we get to this letter. 


Alicia Hamberg is of the opinion, as she said to us on her blog, that we are totally failing in our criticism of Steiner education:


Your methods would, if you actually got that movie of yours finished and watched by anyone, sabotage criticism of Steiner/waldorf education for years to come. You’re handing the waldorf movement the opportunity to dismiss — to laugh at — criticism on a plate.


Really?  From over here, it’s blindingly obvious that Alicia Hamberg, “Thetis Mercurio”, Diana Winters, Pete Karaiskos, Esther Fiddler, and “Falk”, in their actions of mobbing people, are achieving that ridicule all by themselves.


We are confident that at least one person, possibly more, must have observed what a targeting has taken place here, have noticed the way that huge projections have been made, and that we have been publicly drubbed, apparently because we had the temerity to mention the fact that if people do not name individual schools, then others will not be able to recognise the dangers of them.


Why those critics who have noticed that have said nothing, is a disturbing mystery.


Our methodology, as we described in Safe To Tell, is that we started from one simple observation, that although our daughter followed the advertised school policy which said that if you are bullied the thing to do is to tell, that when she told about the well documented bullying and assault, it was proven to be very unsafe, and we have continued to tell to see how far we have to go before it does become safe. 


It is an interesting story, and sadly nowhere much more so than on Alicia’s blog, where it is claimed that the critics are all about protecting children


Does Alicia not know then, about how “Thetis Mercurio” has demonstrated what can really only be described as grooming behaviour towards our child?  How can we call it otherwise when “Thetis Mercurio” made so many advances towards her, with healing offers of help to re-engage her with school, even sending out her son to us with the message that he came really only to talk to our daughter about his wonderful school, in the country.  All this at the same time as having asked Angel to write an article for the Local Schools Network, as she knew that this could be helpful since we’d succeeded in getting in front of the Human Rights Tribunal.  “Thetis Mercurio” also acknowledged the potential relevance of the New Zealand educational landscape to the Free school issue in the UK - and the timeliness of the opportunity - which came at a time of major stress for us, but was too important not to do, as “Thetis” said it was a really important opportunity.


Instead of working through any of the situations which she herself had initiated, however, “Thetis Mercurio” apparently then used the inconvenience caused by her own son as a reason to dump our daughter suddenly, without giving any reason. Just at the point that she began to show some interest, “Thetis Mercurio” suddenly refused to communicate with anyone in the family, in spite of her promised help, including with the article.


She then just sat back and allowed us to get viciously mobbed on the site of her friend Alicia, not even correcting Alicia's and Diana's nasty slurs on Angel’s motivation for writing the article in the first place, which she absolutely knew to be untrue.


Even the absolute refusal of the mobbers to allow that we were still trying to put some humour into the situation, could have been alleviated if “Thetis Mercurio” had chosen to speak up, as she had told us how much she adored our comedy work and liked how we always tried to see the funny side, however bad the circumstance.


Could this be the same women who had written to Jenn (a woman who had attacked Alicia Hamberg via private email):

 

To use your children as a shield to hide behind when in reality you’ve acted hastily and unkindly is the worst aspect of your behaviour so far”?


That's why it made us feel sick to read “Thetis Mercurio's” ingratiating welcoming of people into the critics fold and her constant commenting and tweeting about honesty etc., She has chosen to keep quiet about her own personal experience, but to remain ‘objective’ behind a pseudonym, in which actions she is defended by critics.


How convenient.  We felt we couldn’t ‘out’ “Thetis Mercurio’s” ‘unfriendly’ treatment of our daughter, or ourselves, because it would cause zealots to attack her, while all the while, her zealot friend was attacking us! We were getting hammered by Alicia Hamberg on the very platform that, in advocating full publicity and due process, we were failing to understand the necessity for children not to have to lose any friends:


It might certainly be serious enough. But if it’s your own child losing a friend… that’s a different story, right? I would never think that’s ok or worth it. And I don’t even understand much about children — but I do understand that friends mean a lot to them.


“Thetis Mercurio” may say that it’s all about the children, but her actions give the lie to that. How is it protecting children to behave as “Thetis Mercurio” has and then simply refuse to communicate about it whatsoever, never answering texts, emails and hanging up the phone? This behaviour is towards a child who is still dealing with the legacy of the bullying she endured at a Steiner school - the professed reason for approaching our daughter at all.  


After “Thetis Mercurio’s” sudden about-face, we found an empty notebook with only the name of this school written by my daughter in small letters at the top of the first page - a tentative heading for a possible new beginning, now closed to her by a wall of silence from the gushing “Thetis Mercurio”.


This extreme reaction was all the more confusing for the fact that we were under the impression that any potential misunderstanding between our families had been resolved.


In writing to Jenn earlier, “Thetis” had cautioned her that: as a medical journalist with your own site dealing with ADHD and ADD – you will not want to be seen throwing around insults related to mental health.


But what about the fact that “Thetis Mercurio's” husband also works in mental health?  Why has he had nothing to say about the worrying grooming element in setting up an 11 year old child with all kinds of promises, or the likely effects of then just completely dumping her, with no explanation whatsoever?


“Thetis Mercurio’s” behaviour has been reprehensible but due to her protected anonymity; she’s actually had zero accountability. Less avatar, more scimitar.


Nevertheless it does look as though these critics act as and are treated as Gatekeepers by others as illustrated by Pete Karaiskos: For the dim wits at Steinermentary Project – DECEIT is what Waldorf Critics are fighting AGAINST! If we needed to lie in order to make our point… there wouldn’t BE a point.


His total acceptance of Alicia and Diana’s ‘conclusions’ about us, and his agreement that we need to be ‘exposed’ and ‘distanced from’ makes it clear that he treats them as such.  What deceit is he talking about?


So we must now find out whether the Steiner critics have anything to say about such behaviour.  Certainly we find “Thetis Mercurio” occupies an exalted position, especially on Alicia Hamberg’s blog but of course, we can’t ask people there, because we’ve been censored.


The question of whether Alicia Hamberg and “Thetis Mercurio”, Diana Winters and the rest represent all is exactly the same as the one we had to ask the New Zealand Steiner schools about the behaviour of the Titirangi Steiner School, writing to all those schools to flag up Mark Thornton’s promotion within The Federation of Rudolf Steiner Waldorf Schools in New Zealand after his actions in expelling three children whose parents had had to flag up bullying, including assault.  The responses of the schools, and their lack thereof, when given the facts, led us to put up a flag about the Federation, where Mark Thornton now holds more ‘portfolios’ than anyone else.


So it’s highly ironic that we now find ourselves in this position vis à vis the critics.  Because aren’t Steiner critics the people who are trying to stop the abuses and cult behaviour of the Steiner movement?  We certainly thought so.


What caused this punishment, with Alicia writing a blog post about us to announce our banning? We must be a threat if she’s got to do that!  After all, as she said herself, she’s never “had to” ban any pro-Steiner person from her site. 


Our only crime was to talk about the value of standing up and bringing difficult matters up for discussion.


Yes, we had the gall to mention the fact that Jo Sawfoot has just made the Norfolk Steiner school have to face up to its shame, subject which Alicia didn’t find very interesting. As of yesterday, the 11th October 2011 however, it’s good to see that maybe because of the very difficult whistleblowing actions Jo Sawfoot took against the school, the Norfolk Initiative Steiner School has not received State funding.


According to Alicia, though, she finds the philosophy of anthroposophy far more interesting.  More than actually doing something about it?  Well then, in that case, if Alicia Hamberg or “Thetis Mercurio” are representative of the Steiner critic movement, then its not all about protecting children is it?


Or perhaps it means all children but the child whose parents (and they weren’t the only ones) thanked us for helping them realise that unless they took her out of the school, that she would be punched in the face again? Because according to Alicia Hamberg, they’re not even real, just people we invented.


So what’s the difference between the behaviour of these critics and the behaviour of Steiner Schools?  Perhaps Steiner criticism itself has become a cult.  Certainly if nobody is prepared to name what happened as a mobbing we would have to wonder...


In a November 2010 article, Alicia quoted Rudolf Steiner:


No person is qualified to form a judgment on the contents of this work, who has not acquired — through the School of Spiritual Science itself or in an equivalent manner recognized by the School of Spiritual Science — the requisite preliminary knowledge. Other opinions will be disregarded: the authors decline to take them as a basis for discussion.


And she commented: The result is that anthroposophists always have an excuse for disregarding valid arguments from outsiders. And they do so, more often than not.


But that’s Alicia’s excuse for disregarding valid arguments from outsiders!  According to Alicia Hamberg and Diana Winters our very response to the experience of being attacked by a Steiner school is abnormal.  The normal response, according to Diana, is to “get on with your life” in order to avoid your children getting further victimised.  So, because we stood up, therefore alerting our children to the existence of and necessity for justice, we’re now apparently out of touch with ‘normal’ parents and therefore lack some ‘requisite preliminary knowledge’: There’s a sense coming from you that your own project became more important than the children’s wellbeing, at some point maybe you stopped being able to relate to these other ordinary parents whose main concern was helping their own children move on.  And that’s why our ‘opinions will be disregarded’.


Not only that, Alicia of course went so far as to say that it was all our fault (another classic mobbing technique) and that she would have chucked us out too if she was head of a school herself.  But what can have provoked her to say such an extreme thing about people that “Thetis Mercurio” had referred to as ‘funny’ and ‘brave’ because of the stance we took?  It’s a very extreme position, even if you don’t understand someone’s methods, as Alicia claimed she didn’t.


The question of what we are to do when it becomes so difficult to speak about hidden and violent matters, is certainly not exclusive to the Steiner movement. The internet is awash with the issues that face whistleblowers in all walks of life.  It is the very reason we felt it was worth mentioning the option of standing up!  It was also exactly the point of contention between our position and that of Alicia Hamberg and Diana Winters, that led to the public mobbing. 


Not one Steiner critic has come forward to object to this aggressive, censoring behaviour which sounds, and feels, exactly the same as what happens if you’re ‘not a good fit’ at a Steiner School.


Which means that it needs to be tested, because we’ve often asked ourselves, how does the Steiner movement manage to create such a feeling of being vulnerable to misunderstanding from an unfeeling world?  It makes it very hard to speak out, as Alicia Hamberg was at pains to point out to us, many people don’t feel they have a choice: here, and here.


How much more difficult is it to ‘out’ behaviour of people who, not only publicly oppose themselves specifically to such cultish brutality, but who are actually anonymous themselves, with only a pseudonym for a public profile? 


Apart from the clear danger to ourselves of continuing to dare to speak in such a hostile environment, surely we run the danger, by exposing weaknesses or corruption among Steiner critics, of giving the Steiner movement ammunition, and therefore being accused of being traitors, even to our own cause, but certainly to the cause of bringing injustices in the Steiner movement to light? Exactly the same problem for people needing to speak out about schools!


But we know what has happened to us at the hands of soi-disant “Steiner critics”, and regardless of what mobbing critics might think, we know that a Steiner criticism that practises the same abuses that the movement itself does, is really quite useless and will never be able to vanquish the anti-values it claims to abhor.  


Plus, if we do what Alicia Hamberg told us to do and shut the fuck up, walking away instead of publicising this, to avoid any damage to the movement of Steiner critics, we will be colluding in our own abusive treatment, another neat trick cults always manage to pull off.  


We think this admirably illustrates why standing up in the first place is such a good idea, because the behaviour of those critics who “argued” against standing up, projecting their guilt-tripping behaviour onto us, is so clearly corrupt. 


All this is information that must be made available to newcomers, because just as with the schools, if people are not warned then they cannot know. 


Perhaps the critics will tell us that there is no collective obligation to the general public and that all critics are independent - again that’s exactly what Steiner schools say.


Although it is unpleasant to have to revisit the excoriation of us performed publicly by Alicia Hamberg and Diana Winters, it is not hard to find within it all the silencing methods so frequently used against families by the Steiner movement, which are also classic mobbing techniques, e.g. that we brought it upon ourselves, that we made it up, that we are mentally unstable.  All these tactics are flagged up again and again on Alicia’s own blog!  Why does nobody appear to have noticed that they have been used to try and get rid of us? 


It is almost too dangerous to be personal in this regard, as it does feel dangerous now to speak up, when so much damage has already been done.  The actions of “Thetis Mercurio”, specifically, have been very hard to understand, as she has chosen to behave in an extremely aggressive manner at a supremely difficult time in our lives, which was her stated reason for getting involved in the first place.  This is not the place to explore those circumstances, but they are written about here.


It was Thetis who asked Angel to write the article on LSN which caused the mobbing.  By the time it was published, Thetis was absolutely refusing to speak to us, or to our 11 year old daughter, to whom she had made substantial advances.  She obviously does not feel that she has done anything wrong in this and that is why when we now see her gushing to others about honesty and children’s safety, we see a disgusting display of hypocrisy and an abuse of her anonymous status which other critics are at such pains to protect and defend.


That's why Alicia Hamberg banned us from her blog, because it made us feel so sick to read “Thetis Mercurio's” over-unctuous welcoming of people into the critics fold, whilst simultaneously drawling on that you couldn’t have known what you were getting into that we were provoked into commenting anonymously; we were always drubbed otherwise  by that point if we wrote anything as ourselves, so we thought we’d give anonymity a go.


Yet Alicia Hamberg’s behaviour immediately following the publication of the article Thetis had asked Angel to write, came on top of what “Thetis Mercurio” herself had dished out, while Thetis herself did nothing to stop her “friend” from trying to completely destroy us, our work, our reputation.  All the same circumstances were still going on in the background at this point, and we had no reason to assume that Thetis was not communicating privately with Alicia, in spite of the fact that she did not speak up publicly. 


It will be interesting to see whether some Steiner critics are tempted to try to minimise the possible effects of this experience on a family who has worked so hard to get their case in front of the Human Rights Tribunal.


Alicia Hamberg’s sole point was that we were guilt-tripping people: I’m saying that you’re appealing to feelings of guilt, and that they can’t be expected to stand up:


After having had to leave waldorf — and taking care of all the other bad effects of steiner education and all the child’s already been through –, actually going around barking publicly is perhaps not something most parents have the emotional energy to deal with. And, again, it’s about what you want to put your own children through, after what they’ve already gone through.


But of course Diana’s comment that our project became more important than the children’s wellbeing and Alicia’s mention of what you want to put your children through, aren’t acknowledged as a huge guilt trip. The exact same tactic was used against us by the Steiner School. 


Alicia denied trying to make us feel guilty for standing up to the school, and in doing so, she used the ultimate dehumanising tactic of assuming that we aren’t the same as other people and therefore we don’t feel bad when mobbed


You’re supposedly professional documentary film makers — maybe you can more easily handle that stuff than others.


A comforting thought, while she put the boot in perhaps...


We found a sixteen point test and if anybody wishes to argue with the fact that it was a mobbing, we will go back and show in detail the whole ugly scenario which we would rather not have to do since it was very unpleasant the first time round.  If anyone does try and argue that this was not a serious attack, we will find it hard to believe that they have actually read it perhaps just skimming through the crib notes from Alicia Hamberg, like Diana, or Pete Karaiskos, whose “sad” comment and name calling makes a mockery of his own extremely tough experience, since he appears willing to dish it out to others whilst being completely uninformed. As Diana herself put it: thanks for your summaries (this way I don’t have to read it all).


Mobbing behaviour always only seeks to undermine, not to understand.


For instance, Alicia Hamberg accused us of “targeting people” by mentioning the fact that if people don't finger particular schools then no-one will know about the particular dangers of them.  Not only that, but in using the word “target”, Alicia (who has a law degree) was being deliberately provocative, since it appeared in the judgement in the Jo Sawfoot vs Norfolk Steiner school court case, which had been quoted in the LSN article.  When picked up on it, Alicia backed off and claimed that she had meant ‘target’ in the sense that we were not trying to attract train-spotters or sky-divers - i.e. it was not a serious point, just a bullying tactic during a mobbing.


So how does Alicia Hamberg herself react should someone unreasonably attack her?  In May this year she helpfully provided a useful control example when the aforementioned Jenn, who she describes as a “bliss-ninny”, wrote her an aggressive private email.  Alicia’s response was robust, thorough and provides useful information as to her opinion on the ethics of attacking others and of censorship: When people don’t enjoy what you write to them — threaten them! They think they’re allowed to do exactly what they please behind closed doors, as it were, and get away with it? That other people should just put up with it, unable to respond, prevented from protesting against it?” 


She was clear that Jenn could not expect her to keep quiet about such an out and out attack on her and at the time, we felt Alicia's response to such personal attack was entirely justified because we did not know how hypocritical it would look from here.


In contrast, finding Keith Thompson's article (who according to Alicia Hamberg doesn't exist) on our developing news site Amazon News Media, which is admittedly as yet fairly unformed, but nevertheless where we chose to publish our experiences about her treatment, Alicia Hamberg refused to link to it, telling her readers that it was all filled with lies.  Diana Winters then neatly fudged the issue for her by misleading readers, mentioning that anyone could Google Steinermentary and find the offending article. This neatly avoided people seeing the interview describing the vicious behaviour of the Steiner critics since it wasn't on that site at all, as Diana knew perfectly well if she’d read the article herself.  If she hadn’t, then Alicia has dishonestly allowed Diana to mislead others in order to avoid having them read our version of the mobbing she performed.


Regarding using another website to publish this interview, Alicia has written that we are ‘boosting ourselves’ by pretending to be someone else.  Really?  I don’t think there is any single person who has made themselves so visible in this regard on so many websites as Angel Garden. 


Of course, and isn’t Alicia’s other complaint that it’s ‘all about us’ another feature of the mobbing that is eerily similar to the Steiner school’s attitude, and which we’ve read about numerous times as a hated Steiner tactic, on Alicia’s blog and elsewhere? It is also a classic, if not the classic, mobbing technique.


Alicia has even tried to use the fact that we have more than one web-site as evidence that there is something wrong with us.  Based on what?  The fact that she has one blog? It’s our way of filing the information we gather. It may not be the way others want to organise their work, but that is all that can reasonably be said about it.  We did not ask Alicia Hamberg's permission to go to a Steiner School and we do not need her permission to decide how to respond to its abusive behaviour, or hers.


Angel’s image is all over our work, making it extremely public, and that is what makes it different from others.  Finding Amazon News Media, and then using the fact that we had published our point of view there, Alicia deliberately censored us, which she doesn’t even do to Sune Nordwall, who presents himself anonymously all over the place, including publishing entirely fake interviews with her.  Perhaps that’s why she overreacted to the suggestion that her mobbing behaviour might find its way into video with her part in it being reconstructed, which led to cries of that being “unethical”.


In regard to Sune Nordwall, Alicia has more than once been clear that communicating in private, and hiding behind the internet was unethical, and that people deserve a right to respond. Here’s what she said about Sune Nordwall’s actions on Mumsnet:


I don’t think I (and my mental health) should be the topic in a thread on Mumsnet, when I am not allowed to post there. He knows I can’t respond to anything written on Mumsnet, he had me banned from there (twice)


Really?  These freedoms are selectively awarded and certainly not extended to us.  Incidentally, based on this comment, it’ll be interesting to see if this letter gets discussed online in places unknown to us or where we’ve been banned, again this is what happened at the school.


In our case Alicia Hamberg has given neither us, nor “Thetis Mercurio” the chance to respond since she deleted both the comment we made about “Thetis”, and Alicia’s own comments about it, and instantly banned us.  It's pretty obvious that “Thetis Mercurio” doesn't really want the opportunity to respond, preferring that others should remain as ignorant of her part in things, and of who she really is.  And Alicia, being a good friend, has obliged by wiping any record of anything to do with it, or that it concerned “Thetis Mercurio” at all.  Very cloak and dagger.


It probably wasn't the wisest thing to do, to post an anonymous comment, but hell, these are the people who had slammed us both for encouraging people to stand up, and for actively helping other people to remain anonymous at their own request!   And the person we made the comment about was also anonymous, which is fine for them, apparently.  Others, of course, have Avatars and virtuous anonymity, whereas if we ourselves use pseudonyms, they’re “fake identities”.


Jenn had written to Alicia in private, and speculated that Alicia Hamberg  might fit in with a group of really maladjusted people (that being the Waldorf critics)”.


Alicia Hamberg responded…


Well, were it true, it still seems much preferable to the Waldorf paradise you’re depicting. Because at least our world is somewhat closer to real. At least we don’t feed ourselves on illusion.


Yet Alicia and Diana have seen fit to tell us that as we have used properly signed off (i.e. broadcast-legal) and clearly labelled 'reconstruction' of parents testimony in a video, that this means that we should call it fiction, which then quickly morphed into meaning that since we hadn’t pixelated or blurred the images of those actual parents, but instead hired actors to speak their words, at their own request, thereby perfectly protecting their identities, that we made it all up.  Alicia Hamberg and Diana did not stop short of declaring that we were interviewing actors.


How is this not feeding on illusion?  Even the BBC, even on the radio (no fuzzy pictures possible there), will use reconstruction (i.e., actors) to hide someone's identity.  I guess that makes them “demented fuckwits too, as Alicia Hamberg has called us on her site where others were allowed to make comment about us after we were banned as Falk did, waiting until then before joining in which does show remarkable courage!


All this faff about reconstructed video footage, so aggressively put to us, was coming from people who admitted themselves that their expertise is in the written word and nothing else, as Alicia says: I don’t get what the medium is about. I don’t experience the benefits, because I don’t see the point.” (PDF)


Yet although Diana and Alicia admit that the old methods may not cut it any more, as Diana said, I know we’re dinosaurs over on critics, talking mainly to each other because it’s unlikely many Waldorf parents are actually reading that list, our efforts to work through the difficulties involved in developing a methodology for making video material about a cult, which is an extremely complicated, sensitive and now obviously dangerous business, have been completely dismissed.


It is impossible to view the icy behaviour of Alicia Hamberg and Diana Winters towards us, our work, our ethics, our evidence our motivation, our honesty, our experience, as being prompted by any real concerns about any of it.  This cannot be seen as any kind of an attempt to engage with us. The point of a mobbing is always simply to mob.  It’s not hard to imagine that mobbing situations generally do tend to have hidden murky circumstances in the background and that is certainly the case here.


Another classic mobbing technique is to pretend that the victim has ‘blotted their copy book’, and therefore must lose the previous goodwill that the aggressor claims to have had.  Alicia Hamberg's assertion that she had been positive about our Steinermentary site, in late November 2010 when she discovered it (PDF) is not especially true.  She thought we were apologists for Steiner, as others did also, and that we were off the mark, even then.  No attempt was made to find out, no clicks on the ‘contact us’ button, even when “Thetis Mercurio” informed people that is was us - the site wasn't launched at this point, that happened on the 27th of February with our poster campaign - Rudolf Steiner's 150th birthday present from us.


Following that, we have found a post from around the launch date of the Steinermentary site.  Alicia and Diana bemoaned the unreadiness of either Steiner criticism, or Alicia Hamberg, to engage with new media, including an acknowledgement that although reconstructions of actual interviews are not the first choice, that we have been transparent, both from Diana; there’s nothing really wrong with it, since they’re clear and upfront that it’s staged, so it’s not like it’s deceptive or from Alicia I can’t really object to it, since there’s no deception going on.


Yet they had no problem in attacking our methods as if they were highly knowledgeable and of accusing us of dishonesty.


Alicia Hamberg's previous opinions can really only look vaguely positive against her recent assassination attempts including her current updates which she warned would be sloppy due to not giving a shit e.g.:


Update on September 22, 2011. I would very much like to warn people to get involved with the pair behind the Steinermentary project. I don’t have the time to write more about it right now (see discussion threads), but I wish that nobody takes the post below as a sign of support for them or as a recommendation for people to get involved with them.


In writing this open letter to the critics we know that we are again opening ourselves to potential further abuse, but if we don’t do it, then we cannot either defend ourselves or warn others.  This is the position that Alicia Hamberg, Diana Winters and “Thetis Mercurio” have put us in.  Again, it’s all so familiar in the Steiner treatment, where people feel they ‘have no choice’ but to remain silent.


Of course, to justify such brutish behaviour, it had to look as if it is us that aren't up for discussion, and of course this is said many times in the mobbing.  But go back to the original article on LSN where Alicia Hamberg first picked Angel up on her comments about us creating a platform for video, and you'll clearly see Angel apologise, and acknowledge that she had not come over correctly.  Or go here and see how we felt constantly tripped up every time we tried to communicate. During the actual mobbing, of course, things looked different, but who can remain polite or even talk properly at all whilst others are trying to knock your teeth out?


The simple fact of the matter is that there is no "correct" way to respond to the experience of being hounded or mobbed by a group of people because you bring up things that they want hidden, whether that happens at a Steiner school, at the hands of an anonymous person, or on Alicia Hamberg's blog!


There is no law that says, ‘when this happens, go to the fifth counter on the left’, or something like that.  We just do what we do and it makes sense to us and we'll explain it to anyone who asks politely.


The actual point of contention, which was the basis for the mobbing, that if people don't identify schools, then others will not know, is a clear and simple truth which all the mobbing in the world will never be able disguise and which neither Diana Winters nor Alicia Hamberg or anybody else, can or will ever be able to refute. And in fact, they did agree with it many times.


Then they ridiculed everything we were doing, and then Alicia Hamberg banned us.


The extremely aggressive behaviour of the Steiner critics have alerted us to two main tendencies:


1. the tendency for self-protective secrecy, combined with fawning insincerity and a lack of will to be open, honest or fair, as displayed by “Thetis Mercurio”, whose syrup masks something altogether different with potential dangers, especially for those she is most enthusiastic about;


2. the tendency for aggression, actual public mobbing, and censorship, as displayed by Alicia Hamberg, Diana Winters, Esther Fiddler, Pete Karaiskos and “Falk”.  Meeting places, like Alicia Hamberg’s blog could represent a danger to unsuspecting whistleblowers, who could be re-traumatised should someone suddenly decide to chew their heads off in an inspired moment of ‘critical thinking’.


Do critics generally condone the behaviours described here of these critics, and do these critics, in their actions and inactions, and in their passive and active aggression towards us, act as Gatekeepers for Steiner criticism?


They now have the dubious honour of being the inspiration for a new addition to the Steinermentary project, The Luciferocity Meter, as a measurement of the manifestation of blind fury dressed up as something else, which seems so prevalent throughout the Steiner world, where awful acts are not only tolerated but justified by various dogmas, anti-democratic acts which are in reality motivated simply by self-protection, xenophobia, and blind ambition, the desire to create a circle of covered wagons and simply shoot anyone who looks a bit different.


Over to you.





 
1861-2011 : 150 years of Rudolf Steiner

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