i could give up if i wanted to

“I came to the conclusion that Alcoholics Anonymous is really a cult religion, one that passes off its proselytizing under the guise of alcoholism treatment, in just the same way as the Church of Scientology sells its cultish psycho-babble and techno-babble nonsense as self-improving psychotherapy.” The Orange Papers is one man’s attempt to debunk the “myth” of the AA 12-step programme. I know he’s not alone in thinking like this (in fact there’s a very well reasoned argument along similar lines in Disinfomation’s “You Are Being Lied To” book), but why is it that so many of these people with obvious chips on their shoulders (however genuine) have websites where the design and choice of colours immediately casts doubt upon their sanity?


  1. semiotics (look it up dude)

    hmm, judging a book by its cover, eh? maybe the design/colors choosen on obviously well thought out sites like disinfo are there to cast doubt on what YOU accept as sane and insane? symbols are just symbols, red is totally culturally arbitratry, and thus in itself meaningless, if you think some color arrangement means something serious than you have been lied to…

  2. Heehee… all good points, well made. I would still argue that a well-designed, graphically pleasing site is the sign of a well-ordered mind, and the opposite suggests a confused outlook. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, and I’m quite happy to believe that this is one. Or not. And I know what semiotics means.

  3. Actually…while the color red itself means different things in different cultures, it is what they in design snob circles refer to as an “attractor color” — that is, a color that draws the eye more quickly than others. This is why red cars get more tickets.

    There are in fact a number of such lower-level effects associated with a number of colors. The color orange, for example, is the color most likely to cause discomfort or stress, while the color blue is a color that induces calm, which psychologists reason is part of why so many people associate the sky and the ocean with relaxation.