Apr 25, 2023


Around the Web, Around the World

A Little Bit Culty

Into Quicksand: Kate Amber on How Cults Pull You In

Landmark Worldwide is a corporation that offers personal and professional development programs with a total of over 2.4 million (!) past participants in 21 countries. Yikes on bikes—that sounds a bit like NXIVM on steroids. Well, while Landmark isn’t technically a cult, it certainly is “A Little Bit Culty”, with no shortage of spirit-stomping coercive control and intimidation in order to create “A world that works for everyone by 2020.” Wait, is that how 2020 went and we’re just misremembering it?!

Today’s guest, Kate Amber, survived Landmark and went on to become a badass expert on violence and abuse prevention after receiving her education from UPenn and the University of Salford. She’s also gone on to create the PsychoSocial Quicksand Model™—take a listen to learn all about it, as well as the time she challenged a Landmark leader, and how she eventually got out, even if she didn’t 100% want to (at the time).

Oh, and would you believe she has a Keith Raniere overlap? What a small, culty little world we live in.

Episode available since April 24, 2023

Apr 18, 2023


Around the Web, Around the World

A Little Bit Culty

Hey, Hun: Emily Lynn Paulson on MLMs and Other Lies

Imagine this: an invitation comes your way to join a group of friends, mostly moms (and let’s assume you are one). Primary activities involve drinking lots of wine, relishing in sisterhood and female empowerment, and best of all, making loads of money. It’s enticing as hell, which explains why Multi Level Marketing groups (MLMs) remain ubiquitous today.

What could go wrong? A shit ton! Hence why our guest today, author and mother Emily Lynn Paulson, believes that all MLMs—which form a $180 billion industry—are cults. Oh, but they’re not just your average cults, because lobbyists and politicians are fighting hard to keep the legal pyramid schemes not only intact, but growing throughout American suburbia (and beyond) like wildfire.

In this episode, we discuss how to not get caught up in the flames.

Episode available since April 17, 2023

Apr 12, 2023


‘Headed off the charts’: world’s ocean surface temperature hits record high

The temperature of the world’s ocean surface has hit an all-time high since satellite records began, leading to marine heatwaves around the globe, according to US government data.

Climate scientists said preliminary data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) showed the average temperature at the ocean’s surface has been at 21.1C since the start of April – beating the previous high of 21C set in 2016.

“The current trajectory looks like it’s headed off the charts, smashing previous records,” said Prof Matthew England, a climate scientist at the University of New South Wales.

. . .

Current observations show moderate to strong marine heatwaves in several regions, including the southern Indian Ocean, the south Atlantic, off north-west Africa, around New Zealand, off the north-east of Australia and the west of Central America.

Apr 11, 2023


Around the Web, Around the World

A Little Bit Culty

Your Turn to Listen: Gwenith Kikkawa and Kevin Alexander on Resilience

You know the old adage; person A joins an organization, person B joins the same organization, persons A and B learn organization is a cult and, after getting married, decide to escape. Wait, is that not normal? Well, thankfully Sarah and Nippy aren’t the only ones who’ve experienced this. Gwenith Kikkawa (they/them) and Kevin Alexander (they/them) are multiple-cult survivors, meaning they’ve experienced culty horrors not just once (like a great majority of our guests), but numerous times. Now, the couple has channeled their experiences into art via playwriting, songwriting, and more, narrowing in on how one can reclaim identity after traumatic coercive thought control over several years.

#IGotOut - The Musical will be featured at the igotout.org produced Story Jam (taking place on October 21st, 2023) as the grand finale performance. The event as a whole is meant to provide a platform for #IGOTOUT stories from all sorts of survivors and advocates.

The venue, The Improv Shop in St. Louis offers an intimate, comedy club atmosphere and tickets will be limited and sold on a first come, first serve basis. Use this link to subscribe and to have the first option on tickets.

This event is a collaboration with the RetreatCon, taking place on the same weekend with the local non-profit Tears of Eden.

Episode available since April 10, 2023

Apr 4, 2023


Around the Web, Around the World

A Little Bit Culty

Leading Nowhere: Jordan Harbinger on Self-Help Hell

Today’s guest, Jordan Harbinger, went from Wall Street lawyer to interview talk-show host. Turns out he’s been pretty damn good at both careers, with some even calling him “The Larry Kind of Podcasting.” On The Jordan Harbinger Show, he’s now spent 14 years deconstructing the most successful people in the world and asking them how they got to where they are. Inevitably (to us) but unexpectedly (to Jordan), one thing that’s come up a lot on the show? Cults, especially self-help cults, and the absolute ubiquity of coercive control across the United States. In fact, he even experienced some seminars that were A Little Bit Culty himself.

Episode available since April 03, 2023

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