Current Page: 1 of 84
Cryonics, Cult Movement or Ligit Science???
Posted by: FREETED ()
Date: January 22, 2009 08:58PM

Hello Friends,

In 2002, baseball legend and war hero Ted Williams passed away. Mr. Williams gave explicit instructions in his 1996 Will to be cremated and to have his ashes sprinkled off the coast of Florida “where the water is very deep.” His son John Henry blatantly ignored Mr. Williams’ last wish by having him flown by private jet to the Alcor Life Extension Foundation located in Scottsdale, Arizona where Mr. Williams suffered decapitation and then was frozen to -321F.

Immediately following this event, Mr. Williams’ oldest daughter Bobby-Jo protested, stating that this was not what her father wanted. A legal battle began. Bobby-Jo filed suit, but the suit turned out to be futile because of a lack of funds to pursue it. Ric Ridgway, an Assistant State Attorney for Florida, dropped the ball by refusing to examine any of the evidence, stating that “this is a family matter.”

In August of 2003, after my short tenure with Alcor, I approached sports writer Tom Verducci of Sports Illustrated regarding the treatment of Ted Williams as well as other issues surrounding his fate. An article ensued. Word of Ted Williams’ debacle swept the globe. I became what was described on an Alcorian discussion board as “Cryonics Enemy #1.” I was chased from state-to-state by some of the fanatical members of this sect. Several death threats were left for me on my vehicles (which can be viewed on my website.) As a result, I went into hiding.

In 2004, Arizona State Representative Bob Stump tried to introduce a Bill to regulate Alcor and cryonics within the State of Arizona. He was met with fierce resistance by the Alcorians. He too became the victim of several threats, one so severe he was forced to notify the Capital Police. Under Alcorian pressure Mr. Stump withdrew his petition. Also in 2004 (as a result of my whistle blowing activities) a Michigan company by the name of Cryonics Institute (unrelated to the Ted Williams event) was regulated under the same laws as the funeral industry.

Today, Alcor continues to operate without any regulation whatsoever. I have made the decision to come out from hiding this year (2009) to publicly lead the initiative to regulate the practice of cryonics. I feel that this action is the only right thing to do by those who have fallen victim to certain activities of this unregulated practice. Regardless of what certain cryonics organizations might want you to believe, I hold absolutely no malice against Alcor or cryonics; I simply want to do the right thing, to call the public’s attention to this very unfortunate issue. Hence, my book SHIVER.

In conclusion, I have been accused by the Alcorians of wanting to end the practice of cryonics by “shutting them down.” I have to say that this is far removed from the truth. An individual has the RIGHT TO CHOOSE the final disposition of their remains, whether it’s by burial, cremation or cryonics. However, for the federal and local governments to continue to allow companies such as Alcor to operate unregulated, is in my opinion reckless and is an endangerment to an individual’s personal rights. The federal government as well as every state within the USA should follow the State of Michigan’s example in assuring that an individual’s last wish is honored and that his or her rights are protected.

Please support my cause by signing my petition (link below) to regulate cryonics. Also for more information and history about this subject, please visit my website and my YouTube videos.

Petition to Regulate Cryonics: []

Thank you,

Larry Johnson, Author of Shiver

Please take the time to explore the following links:

Larry Johnson (Author) Bio: []

Larry’s FREE TED Website: []

Larry’s YouTube Video’s regarding the fate of Ted Williams: []

For the book SHIVER by Larry Johnson please visit: []

Newspaper Articles
What happened to Ted?
By: Tom Verducci, Sports Illustrated

Ted’s tragedy unfolds
By: Tom Verducci, Sports Illustrated

Scottsdale company’s role in death probed
By: Bill Bertolino, East Valley Tribune

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Cryonics, Cult Movement or Legit Science???
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: January 24, 2009 06:07AM

Very interesting.
One hears all this weird stuff about Cryonics, which seemed to be more about making money, and also wishful thinking. It certainly is not being approached scientifically.
And Cryonics should be regulated, as part of the funeral industry.
It would be interesting if a cultish mindset, that rejects criticism and science, has formed around it.

Also, the Raelians may be making some bogus claims about Cryonics too. So its not a stretch to have Cryonics Cults, especially when people are freezing people's heads, and making money.

Make sure to send some info to people in the Skeptic movement, like the folks at

Robert Todd Carroll at SkepDic, wrote about the Ted Williams event.
Maybe with your input, he will have an entry on Cryonics in the SkepDic too.

Also, write to the James Randi SWIFT newsletter, he may post it. []

also, contact Skeptic Mag, as they seem to have been a bit soft on Cryonics
Special Section: Cryonics

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Cryonics, Cult Movement or Legit Science???
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: January 24, 2009 06:42AM

as well, post the info to some skeptical forums, like the James Randi forum.

You may getting the biggest bang in the Skeptic community, as there you have science based people, who generally are friendly to the idea of cryonics, but demand rigorous evidence for claims being made.
There have been some dubious and outrageous claims coming out of the Transhumanism Movement, with a part of that movement becoming a hype-machine at best.

Ray Kurzweil seems to be involved with Alcor on some level?
How about Kurzweil's partner Terry Grossman?

You are onto something here, there is a cultish mindset in certain areas of the Transhumanism movement, of which Cryonics is a subset.
There is also a lot of money being made by someone.

I've always suspected that one day they will open the freezers at these Cryonics places and find there is nothing in there, that everything rotted away as the freezers failed time after time, and no one was told.

Again, try to get into the Skeptic movement and Transhumanism area, where Dr. Michael Shermer, Richard Dawkins, Ray Kurzweil, and all those folks speak.

And get Dr. Michael Shermer a copy too.
He knows all about Terry Grossman's outrageous "health" claims, which may be directly linked to the cryonics debacle?

Need a catchphrase though...

Cryonics shmyonics!
Cult of Cryonics?

This could be on the cover of New Scientist, which is probably why they are freaking out.
Something is rotten, and smells bad in this.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Cryonics, Cult Movement or Ligit Science???
Posted by: Sparky ()
Date: January 24, 2009 06:51AM

Legit science? Hardly. I think the cryonic nuts have watched too many 'Futurama' episodes on Comedy Central. Freezing heads? Last time I checked, if you are missing your head you are dead. The same for a head that is missing it's body.

Have the Cryo-thieves explained how they intend to take a head that has experienced brain-death and/or now flash frozen and thaw it out avoiding the massive cellular damage caused from cells bursting during the freezing process?

I know, I know...they will say "In the future, science may have the answers..."


I have no problem with Barnum's (reported) adage "There is a sucker born every minute" or "There is an Ass for every seat" as it applies to cryonic robbery. If you have a lot of money and wish to give it to a cyrogenic funeral parlor/graveyard since it makes you feel better, then go for it.

I think these cyronic people should be forced to register as morticians...then you will have your "regulation" of the people-popsicles you seem to want.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Cryonics, Cult Movement or Legit Science???
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: January 24, 2009 07:17AM

There are a bunch of "respected Thought Leaders" out there today, who promote the cryonics idea with all kinds of speculations. It comes down to a Star Trek type of idea, and cloning the person, "uploading" their minds, etc.

But its interesting that some information may be coming out about Alcor.
And that there may be some cultish aspects to the belief system of some of those involved.
I just thought it was generally a money-maker for these folks, or basically just another way of dying, getting buried, cremated, frozen...

it does become another "religion" in that sense.
As for those who get buried often think one day they will be "resurrected".

So getting frozen, and then in the future getting "resurrected" somehow, is the exact same belief.

Alcor has been the darling of some of the worst Transhumanism miracle handwavers out there.
And parts of the Transhumanism community are very similar to the mindset of various cults.

People have no idea of the money that is going to be made from Boomers who don't want to die, the Anti-Aging Life Extension groups, cryonics, and the rest. Billions and billions of dollars to be made.

It does appear this book is going to be quite explosive in that community.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Cryonics, Cult Movement or Legit Science???
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: January 24, 2009 07:28AM

and "assisted suicide" will be big in the cryonics field, as people will want to die and be frozen, before their disease kills them!

Cryonics and Assisted Suicide

It will be interesting to see if Ray Kurzweil is part of this book on Alcor, or not.

This Life Extension area, when it gets into the moneymaking part of it, is very cultlike. Because that allows them to make claims without proof, and make a lot of money.
Also, some of these folks are terrified of death, and have no religion, so Life Extension becomes their religion. So it may be like a type of Sci-Fi cultish group.

The one twist here is the intellectal arrogance of most people in this area, they are the ones claiming "science" is on their side, when in fact they are simply speculating about the future.
But it seems to be the big bucks, the money, that is driving the bus.

Cryonics and Life Extension is clearly a "New Religious Movement".

Options: ReplyQuote
Cryonics, Cult Movement, Alcor Life Extension Foundation
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: January 24, 2009 07:41AM

Scottsdale company’s role in death probed
Bill Bertolino, Tribune September 28, 2003

Los Angeles homicide detectives are investigating the 1992 death of a man whose remains are frozen at Scottsdale-based Alcor Life Extension Foundation, the cryonics company known nationally for storing human bodies, including that of baseball icon Ted Williams.

At the heart of the investigation is whether or not a former Alcor employee injected a terminally ill AIDS patient with a paralytic drug to hasten his death, the Tribune has learned.

Brian Carr, a detective with the Los Angeles Police Department, confirmed that the death is being investigated as a result of allegations and evidence turned over by former Alcor chief operating officer Larry Johnson, who left the company in August.

“I can’t really talk much about it at this point,” said Carr, who works in the department’s robbery and homicide division. “It’s still under investigation.”

Carr said he interviewed Johnson about the case.

Johnson first notified Los Angeles authorities of an “unusual homicide” through his attorney.

In a letter sent in mid-July, lawyer John A. Heer told police that Johnson had evidence that “instead of waiting for nature to take its course, one of the members of the suspension team injected the victim with a paralytic chemical which stopped the victim’s heart and breathing within minutes.”

Evidence Johnson and his attorney said they have turned over to investigators includes conversations Johnson secretly recorded with two men he identified as Alcor executives. The Tribune has obtained copies of the recordings.

On one recording, a man Johnson identified as Alcor senior board member and facilities engineer Hugh Hixon states he was at the scene of the AIDS patient’s death when a then-Alcor employee injected the man with a drug known to have the ability to paralyze patients and stop their breathing.

The then-employee administered the injection, “and after about seven or eight minutes (the patient) quit breathing, which was entirely to be expected,” Hixon states on the recording. The Tribune is withholding the name of the former employee Hixon identified because the employee could not be located for comment. Contacted Friday, Hixon said, “I’m declining comment.” He referred questions to Alcor CEO Jerry Lemler, who did not return calls from the Tribune seeking comment.

On another recording, a man Johnson identified as another Alcor executive states he has knowledge of the AIDS patient’s death. He said the information would “absolutely destroy” Alcor if it became public.

The executive adds: “If it came down to a court issue, you know, who’s gonna say anything? Who is going to admit anything? It’s deniable.”

The Tribune is also withholding the identity of the executive at this time because he could not be reached for comment. The investigation into the AIDS patient’s death is the latest inquiry for Alcor, a nonprofit organization in north Scottsdale that freezes human bodies and brains in liquid nitrogen, in the hope that medical breakthroughs may one day restore the dead to life.

The company has the remains of at least 58 people frozen, at a charge of about $120,000 for a full-body suspension.

Last month, Alcor received national attention for its treatment of Williams — the Hall of Fame Boston Red Sox slugger whose remains are stored at Alcor.

Sports Illustrated first reported in August that Alcor severed Williams’ head, drilled holes in it, fractured the skull and misplaced DNA samples, among other allegations. Alcor has never publicly acknowledged ownership of Williams’ body and has denied that his DNA is missing from the facility.

The story spawned a lawsuit by Alcor against Johnson, who supplied the magazine with the information on Williams. Among other claims in its lawsuit, Alcor charges Johnson violated a confidentiality agreement and stole company information and property.

Johnson worked for Alcor from January until Aug. 11, when he said he was fired. He has since filed a counterclaim against Alcor, charging the company falsely accused him of committing theft, fraud and breach of confidentiality. Johnson also charges the company has slandered him.

Alcor also has a contentious history with California authorities.

In 1987, the company was rocked by a scandal involving the death of Riverside, Calif., resident Dora Kent. Authorities questioned whether she was legally dead when her head was removed and frozen. The case was dropped after extensive legal wrangling.

Alcor moved its headquarters in 1994 from Riverside to Scottsdale, where the company is housed in a building in the Scottsdale Airpark. It has 12 employees.

On the audio recording between Johnson and Hixon, Hixon states that he was at the home of the AIDS patient whose death is now under investigation because he was in charge of transporting the man’s body.

As the crew waited for the man to die, Hixon states they prepared a makeshift operating room inside a detached garage near the home. Alcor workers put together plastic drop cloths, lightweight wood and twine, “and we built ourselves a little operating suite in the garage,” Hixon states.

The Alcor crew eventually carried the dying man down the stairs of his home, placed him on a gurney and wheeled him down the street to the garage, where they waited for him to die, Hixon states.

“We waited quite a while,” Hixon states. “He was not very far away from dying.”

Hixon then states that the former Alcor employee asked an assistant to prepare an injection of Metubine, a paralytic drug.

The assistant, Tanya Jones, “didn’t know what it was for,” Hixon states.

Later on the recording, Hixon adds: “Anyway, so the guy quit breathing. He wasn’t very far from quitting breathing, but, uh, we don’t like that kind of thing.”

Reached on Saturday by cell phone in Southern California, Jones initially declined comment.

“Let me just find out what is going on,” Jones said. “And what I can say and what I can’t say, you know. It would be simple enough to either confirm or deny the presence of that someone. “I haven’t thought about that case in a very, very long time.”

Jones added that she took a job with Alcor on Friday after a 6 1/2-year hiatus from the company.

Hixon also indicates on the recording that a growing concern was that the Alcor team might get tied up in traffic when they had to transport the AIDS patient’s remains.

“It wasn’t anything that wasn’t going to happen,” Hixon states regarding the man’s death. “And we did beat the traffic.”

The other Alcor executive indicates on an audio recording that he was not at the scene but had knowledge of the circumstances that caused the AIDS patient’s death. He states the AIDS patient’s death occurred in 1992 in Los Angeles.

“Look, morally I have no objection to doing that sort of thing,” he states. “I think Dr. (Jack) Kevorkian is a great man. But we live in a real world. We just can’t do stuff like that.”

The company executive states that the incident caused Alcor to sever its relationship with the employee who injected the paralytic drug.

“That’s when we decided, Alcor decided, this guy is just too dangerous to have around,” he states.

Johnson, who agreed to an interview with the Tribune only on the condition that the newspaper not reveal his address or publish a photo of him, said he became frightened when he learned that a former Alcor employee may have hastened the death of the AIDS patient.

He said he prompted his attorney to contact Los Angeles police. Heer said Saturday that he had several conversations with detectives in early July. Heer is also the attorney for Bobby-Jo Ferrell, Ted Williams’ eldest child, who was at the heart of a family dispute last year over the handling of the former baseball star’s remains.

Options: ReplyQuote
Alcor Life Extension], Is Cryonics Feasible? Stephen Barrett M.D.
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: January 24, 2009 07:51AM

Is Cryonics Feasible?
Stephen Barrett, M.D.

Cryonics is defined by its proponents as "the freezing of humans as shortly as possible after death with the hope of eventual return to life." Proponents claim that it is possible to preserve "with reasonable fidelity" the basic biologic components of the brain and that future technology will be able to repair brain damage caused by "imperfect preservation, premortal disease, and postmortem changes." [1] In 2005 the cost for whole-body freezing and permanent maintenance ranged from about $28,000 to $150,000. “Brain only” suspension, which is less expensive, is also available. The Cryonics Institute states:

As soon as possible after legal death, a member patient is prepared and cooled to a temperature where physical decay essentially stops, and is then maintained indefinitely in cryostasis. When and if future medical technology allows, our member patients will be healed and revived, and awaken to extended life in youthful good health.

Bacterial decay may stop, but that is not enough to make recovery possible. As noted by Michael Shermer, founding publisher of Skeptic Magazine:

Cryonicists believe that people can be frozen immediately after death and reanimated later when the cure for what ailed them is found. To see the flaw in this system, thaw out a can of frozen strawberries. During freezing, the water within each cell expands, crystallizes, and ruptures the cell membranes. When defrosted, all the intracellular goo oozes out, turning your strawberries into runny mush. This is your brain on cryonics [2].

National Council Against Health Fraud president William T. Jarvis, Ph.D., calls cryonics "quackery's last shot at you." In an interview, he said:

Cryonic technology has not been demonstrated to work in laboratory animals. Even if the rest of a person's body could be revived after hundreds of years, the brain could not. Brain cells deteriorate within minutes after death, and any still viable when the body is frozen would be burst by the freezing process. Cryonics might be a suitable subject for scientific research, but marketing an unproven method to the public is quackery [3].

1. The cryobiological case for cryonics. Undated paper distributed in 1989 by Alcor Life Extension Corporation, Riverside, Calif.
2. Shermer M. Nano nonsense and cryonics. Scientific American, Sept 2001.
3. Jarvis WT. Quotation in Butler K. A Consumer's Guide to "Alternative" Medicine. Amherst, N.Y., 1992, Prometheus Books.

Note: Lisa Brinkworth, a British television producer, is interested in hearing about any experience people have had related to cryonics.

Options: ReplyQuote
[Alcor Life Extension], Nano Nonsense & Cryonics, Michael Shermer
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: January 24, 2009 08:01AM

(Full Michael Shermer article at his website, notice the typcial comments by pro-cryonics people)

Nano Nonsense & Cryonics by Michael Shermer
September 2001
True believers seek redemption from the sin of death

Options: ReplyQuote
Cryonics scam, Penn and Teller Bullshit, Alcor
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: January 25, 2009 03:25AM

here's a video about the cryonics scam, with some Penn and Teller Bullshit.

Options: ReplyQuote
Current Page: 1 of 84

Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.
This forum powered by Phorum.