Saturday, February 22, 2014

Tom Phillips Vindicated: Shocking New Revelations on Mormon Leaders' Nefarious Schemes

In light of the recent lawsuit filed against LDS President Thomas S. Monson by disaffected Mormon Thomas Phillips, owner of Mormonthink.com, Expert Textperts has elected to released the following, which was transcribed from a secret recording device in an undisclosed location in Church headquarters. For legal reasons the exact date of the recording and its participants will not be disclosed.

Voice 1: Thank you for stopping by today.

Voice 2: Good to see you, <redacted>

Voice 3: How are you?

V2: Good, good.

V3: Well, let’s get down to business. Shall we start with a prayer?

(sound of all three chuckling)



V1: Okay, enough of that. Now that you’ve been appointed to the Quorum of the Twelve, we’ve got to go over some administrative matters. Of course, you remember we had a similar meeting when you were called as a Seventy. Now that you've advanced in rank, there’s more to cover.

V3: We’re looking forward to working with you, <redacted>, but you've got to know what you’re getting into (laugh)

V2: Hah! Well, I’m not going to lie, it wasn’t easy keeping a straight face when you had me give that General Conference talk on the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon right after we met!

V1: And honestly, that was a test. We needed to know that you could still speak convincingly after we told you what we actually know…

V3: Which you did fantastically…

V1: …and that’s one reason we feel you’ll succeed as an apostle. (shuffling of papers). Here’s your information packet. You’ll need to study this thoroughly later, but for now let’s go over some of the highlights. First of all, the Pearl of Great Price. You’ll remember from your Seventy training that it’s all a known forgery…

V2: Of course.

V1: But the packet provides a few additional details about Joseph and Heber C Kimball drafting it in order to lay the foundations for polygamy.

V3: And wait until you get to the part about Joseph’s other polygamous wives. You won’t find that on the internet!

V1: There’s also a very brief outline of the fourth and fifth First Vision accounts.

V2: Outline?

V1: I’m afraid only the first presidency has access to the full text.

V2: Fair enough.

V1: And frankly, there’s a lot in here that you’ve probably already picked up on having worked in church headquarters for so long. Some people here gossip more than they should…

V3: Hey, don’t look at me; I keep all the protocols! (laughs)

V1: Nevertheless, there’s been a great deal of information leaked that apostates have used to damage us, which has severely curtailed potential profits over the last decade. That’s why the second half of the packet is primarily concerned with member interaction. You remember what you were taught as a new Seventy?

V2: Tithing, tithing, tithing.

V1: Correct. Revenue is key to everything we’re doing. I can’t say much, but the time is coming when we leaders can move far beyond the level of comfortable affluence we currently enjoy at the expense…sorry, from the generosity of members. (background laughter)

V2: Interesting.

V3: Don't get too excited. I’ve been here for years and they still haven’t told me what the exact plan is!

V1: But the main thing to understand is that there is a plan, and if you stick to the script you will be rewarded.

V3: Treasures on earth, am I right? (chuckles)

V1: Which is why it’s critical that we teach members the absolute most literal, irrational, and absurd doctrines we can. Dismiss the science, marginalize scholars, and so on. We work closely with the correlation committee on this matter…

V3: Can you believe it, some of those rubes are still believers?

V1: …but the ultimate end goal is always tithing. We need revenue, especially from our American members.

V2: So the mall in Salt Lake…the property and temple building…

V1: That’s all explained in the packet, as far as you need to know as a junior partner. The most important thing I want you to remember is you must keep up the facade at all times. I cannot stress enough that even your closest family and friends must take you for the most devout, literal believing member. Even <redacted> here takes that injunction seriously. If the truth comes out we’re ruined. The world must never know that we’ve been deliberately lying this whole time.

V3: We’ve been worried that the Catholics would break code, but they’ve held firm, and if they can do it…

V2: I know. You can trust me.

V1: I believe we can. Thanks for your time, <redacted>. I’ll need that packet returned in full within 48 hours. Leave it in your office meanwhile, and lock the door.

V2: Thanks, <redacted>.

(shuffling and footsteps)

V3: (voice fading) Say, <redacted>, we haven’t even mentioned our special cafeteria! Talk about <indecipherable> tithing! <indecipherable> lobster, foie gras <indecipherable>

(recording ends)

12 comments:

  1. Was the part where they ate a live hamster redacted?

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  2. And the point of this is exactly what? Forgive me, I don't get American humour...we Brits/Irish gave the world Monty Python, Spike Milligan, Dave Allen etc. and you come up with this???

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  3. Thanks for commenting Jonathan M. I’m not normally fond of explaining my jokes too much, but I will say that in order to find this funny you’d probably have to be familiar with a certain kind of very negative, very black-and-white (usually) ex-mormon narrative about how the LDS church is run. You’d also probably have to find that kind of narrative fairly absurd, as I do. If not, no worries: my sense of humor isn’t for everyone :)

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    1. Don't worry, you're coming through crystal clear to someone who has close friends and family that are very black and white about these issues. I loved this piece. Not because it mocks those who oppose the church (I realize there are a lot of powerful and personal reasons some individuals leave the church/don't want to join it), but it's true that this is more-or-less the viewpoint of many of the more extreme anti-Mormon individuals out there, or at least the only possible explanation for their beliefs about the church.

      My favorite part is "...you must keep up the facade at all times. I cannot stress enough that even your closest family and friends must take you for the most devout, literal believing member."

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    2. Indeed, it's not criticism or disaffection with the church I find ridiculous, just the rhetoric you find in a (probably small, but very vocal and usually online) subset of ex and disaffected Mormon spaces implying that GAs engage in all sorts of sinister mustache twirling behind closed doors. Criticize if you like--heaven knows I do--but don't be childish about it.

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  4. Boo to Jonathan. If a joke has to be explained it isn't funny anymore. If you didn't get it just smile and back away.

    PS-Monty Python isn't funny.

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  5. This reads like a school play writen by a school child. Very poor attempt guys, must try harder. And if it were true lets have a copy of the MP3?????
    Seriously, you can't actually think people will buy in to this crock of crap can you?

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    Replies
    1. It looks like there's no sneaking anything past a smart guy like you!

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  6. Selling that false narrative while withholding information leaving potential clients/investigators less than informed is not taken lightly in the UK. It is not nearly as black-and-white as you would like it to be Casey. The UK Fraud act is a bit of a misnomer. A better description would be the UK False Advertising Act.

    The UK law is very broad. It does not require a number of things that we think of as associated with "fraud" in the US:

    - no actual damage is necessary;
    - no actual victim is necessary;
    - actual falsity of the claims is unnecessary, only that they are "misleading" or "might be false";

    Therefore,
    - no "reasonable reliance" by a victim is required;
    - no causal relationship between the false statements and the victim's actions is required.

    To your little satire's main underlying point that Monson’s defense may well be that he was not aware of any evidence that could cast doubts on the veracity of church beliefs but I doubt if there is a court in the UK that would accept it. For Monson, as head of the Corporation, to claim ignorance of any evidence showing that the church might or could be wrong, & at the same time employ several apologist groups under the umbrella of the Maxwell institute to counter such views, would be taking credibility to the extreme. Unless of course he can also claim that he’s never heard of the Maxwell institute. I cannot see any judge being so naive as to accept such a defense.

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    Replies
    1. You're precious. I'm no lawyer and have neither the training nor the inclination for armchair legal analysis, but I will suggest that if you think my underlying point has anything to do with defending President Monson then you've badly misread me.

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    2. Calling me "precious" is your way of dismissing my response by demeaning the messenger is a cute trick but only the most deluded would concur. So, please enlighten us then...what is your point?

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    3. You seem to be laboring under the misapprehension that I am at all obligated to take you seriously. The point, it seems, is beyond you. Thanks for stopping by!

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