Raising The Allosaur, A Doug Phillips Fraudumentary

Only a few years after moving to San Antonio and starting Vision Forum, Doug Phillips led a tour group of 30 home school kids and their parents (mostly fathers and sons) to Colorado in search of dinosaur bones. According to the Vision Forum news release sent out immediately following the tour in May 2002, this small group of home educators met with a stunning success. Doug Phillips claimed that, under his personal leadership, his home school group found a fully articulated, 70% intact, Allosaurus. He would later claim that his home school tour group successfully “raised” the allosaur:

COLORADO, May 20 — A dinosaur fossil expedition for home educators sponsored by Vision Forum and Creation Expeditions has excavated a rare, large, intact Allosaurus measuring more than 22 feet in length, 10 feet in height, with a complete skull more than a yard long. Allosaurs are believed to be a close relative of the Tyrannosaurus rex, and differ from the T. rex primarily in size and cranial capacity.

Under the leadership of Vision Forum president Doug Phillips, an adjunct professor of apologetics with the Institute for Creation Research, and Peter DeRosa, a veteran archaeologist and paleontologist with Creation Expeditions, the team of thirty home educators spent a week hunting for and excavating fossils in a privately owned location in the Skull Creek Basin of Northwest Colorado. Vision Forum News Release, May 20, 2002

Doug Phillips’ news release was replete with half-truths, lies, fabrications, and stealing credit from the men who had actually been responsible. Even the claim that they’d “spent a week hunting for and excavating” was a lie. In reality they had only spent three days on site excavating.

World Net Daily naively swallowed Vision Forum’s news release and posted an article about it. It’s for good reason that Doug Phillips’ stunning paleontological feat of finding a major dinosaur and excavating it, all in the span of three days, had never been done before, and would never be claimed again. Such a feat is completely impossible, even for seasoned professional dinosaur paleontologists, of which no one on Doug Phillips home school team were. Contrary to Doug Phillips’ news release Pete DeRosa was not “a veteran archaeologist and paleontologist”. In the same Vision Forum news release Doug Phillips announced his intentions to produce a video documentary:

Vision Forum is planning to release a video documentary on the historic Dragon’s Den Expedition in the future.

In order to be a video documentary, Doug Phillips’ film would need to come reasonably close to what comports with the common definition:

doc·u·men·ta·ry (of a movie, a television or radio program, or photography) using pictures or interviews with people involved in real events to provide a factual record or report.

a movie or a television or radio program that provides a factual record or report. New Oxford American Dictionary

RTAfilmcrewA scripted staged event cannot be a “documentary”; but that’s precisely what Doug Phillips’ video proved to be. He took a film crew on location to video tape a staged event, based on details that he already knew about the dig sites, including what had already been discovered there. He would take credit for his own group doing everything, including the discovery. He took full credit for the excavation. He even took credit for his home school group “raising the allosaur”—even though his tour group was long gone prior to the allosaur excavation.

Doug Phillips’ film had been carefully choreographed in advance around his self-promoting agenda. The script was a sham, and the resultant video “documentary” was a fraud – a fraudumentary. Many thousands of Vision Forum patrons purchased Doug Phillips’ video. They made him rich in the process, and not only from just purchasing the video itself. A large percentage were so highly impressed by Doug Phillips’ stunning paleontological success that they purchased many other Vision Forum products, as well. It seemed that the Christian home school community had suddenly found a creationist hero that they could rally behind, and rally they did.

Raising The Allosaur coverOn November 15, 2002, concurrent with the publication of the 2003 Vision Forum Catalog, Doug Phillips and Vision Forum released its “first feature documentary film”, the 60 minute Raising The Allosaur: The True Story of a Rare Dinosaur and the Home Schoolers Who Found It. It’s ironic but not surprising that Phillips selected a title that included the word “True”, for there is very little truth to it.

The 2003 Vision Forum Catalog stated:

“Consider that our dinosaur site was completely excavated by home educators. The paleontologists were home educators. The team doing the restoration was made up of home educators.” Vision Forum Catalog, 2003 (pg. 3)

Thus begins the saga in a long train of lies, fraud, stealing credit from and destroying the livelihoods of other men, and legal chicanery that is Doug Phillips’ duplicitous career in Christian film making, film production, and film promotion. Raising The Allosaur formed the backdrop, the very foundation, on which the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival was soon thereafter launched in 2004.

I watched the video trailer and was impressed. So like thousands of other suckers, I bought the video.

I was at the time a fan of Doug Phillips and Vision Forum. Looking back on it now I can plainly see how my biases blinded me to what I was viewing. Anyone who claims they’re “unbiased” is very likely deceiving themselves. We all have biases and we all need to be mindful of how they can affect our judgment. Eventually common sense started overcoming my pro-Doug Phillips biases.

As I grew increasingly suspicious about Doug Phillips’ incredible claims, I made calls to Vision Forum. In doing so I encountered doubletalk and stonewalling, especially from Wesley Strackbein (Vision Forum Public Relations Director) and Bob Renaud (Doug Phillips’ Personal Assistant). No one at Vision Forum had any credible answers, and all the while Doug Phillips was hiding in the background, refusing to take any calls or respond to emails. My suspicions only increased that Doug Phillips’ “documentary” must have been a sham.

I’m no paleontologist, but I do understand some basics, and one of the basics is that you can’t find a large dinosaur of any kind and excavate it, and raise it, all in the span of a week. Even prior to the actual work of the excavation, such projects require a great deal of preparation. That includes drawing up and executing the necessary contracts between all concerned parties (especially the property owner), surveying the site, equipment provisioning, and logistical support. All that requires money, and this generally means securing financial backing. Because of all these factors it usually requires months, if not several years, to bring a dinosaur excavation project to successful completion. In other words you can’t just show up and start digging and have any chance of raising a large dinosaur.

Raising The Allosaur was soon dubbed a “fakeumentary” by those who had personally worked the dig site long before, and long after, Doug Phillips and his home school tour group had made their three-day appearance. Included among them were the property owner, the project director, the surveyor, the logistical support man, the equipment man, and the excavation team.

Doug Phillips had big financial problems at the time that he set out to produce his “first feature documentary film”. Just prior to the release of Raising The Allosaur, Dunn and Bradstreet’s fiscal rating of Vision Forum Inc showed that they were over a million dollars in the red. The many thousands of copies of Raising The Allosaur that were sold, along with all the associated dino dig merchandise, including Indiana Jones fedoras, rock hammers, fossils, and dinosaur toys, quickly put Vision Forum in the black. There was no other product line that had ever made Vision Forum so much money so quickly.

Raising The Allosaur rapidly became a stunning success, and a very lucrative one too. One would think that Doug Phillips would have proudly showcased Raising The Allosaur at the inaugural San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival on November 11-13, 2004, as an inspiration to other filmmakers of how Christians should (in Doug Phillips’ words) “take dominion”. Certainly that’s the way he’d portrayed Raising The Allosaur everywhere else. Doug Phillips had aggressively promoted his video to the press, and in numerous home school convention speeches he’d given coast to coast. Yet with the arrival of his first film festival he mysteriously went silent about Raising The Allosaur.

As part of the SAICFF awards consideration process competitors must comply with The Ten Commandments of Submitting Films for the Jubilee Awards:

Eighth Commandment

Don’t steal other people’s work…

Ninth Commandment

Truth is essential to Christian films… Film is an especially powerful medium for communication and should be handled with integrity.

No one should assume that just because Doug Phillips makes the rules that he complies with them himself. To quote him, “He who defines the terms wins.”

Twin brothers Graham & Joel Fisher of Beowulf Studios, who filmed Raising The Allosaur, received the SAICFF’s top award, but not for that movie.

The “Best of Festival” Jubilee Award — a $10,000 grand prize — went to The Art of Play
SAICFF News Release, November 15, 2004

Doubts were raised about the objectivity of the judges and whether or not the top award for the 14-minute film short was a payoff for the Fisher brothers’ labors in filming Raising The Allosaur. That was all quite unfortunate because, from all accounts, The Art of Play was a good film. As evidence mounted that Doug Phillips had scripted his entire “documentary” on falsehoods, Raising The Allosaur became a tremendous career embarrassment to the Fisher brothers. More than likely the Fisher twins were guilty of no wrongdoing, other than youthful naiveté.

Oddly enough Raising The Allosaur was never mentioned at the SAICFF, or anywhere else, and it would never be mentioned by Doug Phillips again. For reasons never explained, Doug Phillips abruptly pulled Raising The Allosaur from the Vision Forum web site and catalog, immediately prior to the inaugural launch of the SAICFF.

It was probably no coincidence that the sudden disappearance of the video occurred on the heels of a News Release entitled Villainy Behind the Mask of Virtue: Vision Forum Unmasked. The author, Terry Beh, is a professional writer, having written for Focus On The Family and other major ministries. More significantly Mr. Beh had excavated on the Allosaurus himself, working side-by-side with those whom he knew were responsible for the work. The news release was distributed the week prior to the SAICFF, and it received wide circulation:

“In a few days the faithful will gather at the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival to hobnob with some of the most well-known Christian film makers around, and Doug Phillips will be basking in glory and hyping his fraudulent film.”

Terry Beh’s news release proved to be the straw that broke the Allosaurus’ back, and Raising The Allosaur instantly vanished without explanation. That lack of explanation only raised more suspicions. Questions kept being directed to Vision Forum for which answers weren’t forthcoming. Doug Phillips never made any public statement about the film’s abrupt disappearance, and for over two years there was no Vision Forum explanation at all. When the pressure for answers didn’t subside Vision Forum finally did, quite belatedly, make this one Statement Concerning Raising The Allosaur:

“We want to assure our friends that we firmly stand behind the integrity of the film Raising the Allosaur. Also, contrary to the claims of our detractors, the voluntary decision to withdraw the film from circulation (for the present) had nothing to do with concerns on our part that the film was untruthful. ” (Josh Wean, CFO, Vision Forum, Inc, January 1, 2007)

The 2003 Vision Forum Catalog, and the back cover of the Raising The Allosaur video case, state:

Q: What happens when a group of home school boys and girls travel to the badlands of Colorado with their parents in search of adventure and the hope of finding ancient treasures buried in rock?

A: They make the biggest dinosaur discovery of the year. There, buried in the rock, they excavate three amazing creatures: a many-plated Stegosaur; a 120-foot Brachiosaur. Most importantly, they raise from the ground what appears to be the most complete Allosaur (similar to a T. rex) ever found in the history of paleontology, including the monster’s giant skull complete with rows and rows of once-razor sharp teeth.  (pg. 48)

A number of people knew from the very beginning who was really responsible for discovering, excavating, and raising the Allosaurus. People started asking questions that proved impossible for Doug Phillips to answer. So by the time that the 2004 Vision Forum catalog was released, the description of Raising The Allosaur was altered, but in so subtle a way so as to not attract too much attention:

Q: What happens when a group of home school boys and girls travel to the badlands of Colorado with their parents in search of adventure and the hope of finding ancient treasures buried in rock?

A: They become part of the biggest dinosaur discovery of the year. There, buried in the rock, are three amazing creatures: a many-plated Stegosaur, a 120-foot Brachiosaur, and most importantly, what appears to be the most complete Allosaur ever found in the history of paleontology. As they participate in the excavation of these creatures, they discover even more—remarkable proof that the creature is not millions, but thousands of years old! Vision Forum Catalog, 2004 (pg. 86)

Though the wording between the 2003 and 2004 Q & A appears much the same, a careful comparison shows these are anything but minor differences. Changing the catalog was easy. Yet, Doug Phillips couldn’t so easily change the single most important thing of all – the content of the video itself. Start to finish, Raising The Allosaur is full of half-truths, gross exaggerations, flagrant omissions, lies, and fabrications:

  • The allosaur was not discovered by Doug Phillips and his group of home educators
  • The allosaur was not excavated and “raised” in one week
  • The allosaur was not “completely excavated by home educators”
  • “The paleontologists were home educators” is a half-truth
  • Not even one single bone of the allosaur was raised by Doug Phillips’ group

A synopsis from Creation Wiki accurately states:

In the fall of 2000 Dana Forbes discovered an Allosaur on his property located in the Skullcreek Basin of northwest Colorado. The Allosaur was subsequently excavated under the direction of creation scientist Joe Taylor and his team from the Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum (Crosbyton, TX). Assistance was provided in 2001 by Carl Baugh from the Creation Evidence Museum (Glen Rose, TX), the Derosa Family from Creation Expeditions (Crystal River, FL), and in 2002 by a homeschool tour group from Vision Forum.

After the excavation of the Allosaur was complete Vision Forum and Creation Expeditions made and released a documentary titled “Raising the Allosaur”. Controversy and criticisms about the film surface quickly because of many inaccuracies that were present, the most notable of which was the failure to give any credit for the excavation to the directing paleontologist Joe Taylor. After the exposure of ethical violations the film was pulled from the market in October of 2004.

So who discovered the dinosaur? The Colorado property owner himself, Mr. Dana Forbes, and that happened in October 2000. Dana Forbes removed two of the dinosaur’s vertebrae at that time for later identification. In 1999 Dana and his wife Brenda had acquired just under 70 acres in Massadona, Colorado, just east of Dinosaur National Monument. It wasn’t long before Dana started uncovering dinosaur bones. As a creationist he wanted to use the property for advancing the cause of creationism.

In early 2001 the Denver Post ran an article about the Forbes property and his Dinosaur Excavations. That article gave him considerable exposure and helped him sell fossil dig tours. Several radio interviews came shortly after the Denver Post article. Two National Geographic photographers made arrangements with Dana to come out in May 2001 and shoot photos of his conducting a dig. In June he was contacted by The Today Show to arrange for an on-site interview. It seemed the Forbes were well on their way to having a successful fossil dig business; but their most important concern was that their property be used to bring glory to God. Dana also knew that he would need the help of a skilled paleontologist in order to properly excavate and restore the large dinosaur bones that he knew were on his property.

Joe Taylor

Joe Taylor

Word of Dana’s property started getting around the creationist community. Dr. Carl Baugh visited with the Forbes on May 20, 2001 at their property. He recommended that the Forbes work with the professional dinosaur paleontologist, Mr. Joe Taylor of the Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum. Taylor and the Mt. Blanco team were working at Baugh’s dig site just a few miles away. The next day Taylor and members of his team were introduced to the Forbes at the Forbes’ property. Dana Forbes produced several dinosaur bones for Taylor to examine. Taylor identified two vertebrae as being an Allosaurus. Taylor was soon thereafter contractually assigned as “Chief Excavator” for all work on the Forbes’ property.

Excavation assistance was indeed provided, in part, by Pete DeRosa’s Creation Expeditions, comprised of himself and his two sons Pete Jr. and Mark DeRosa. Doug Phillips and his home school tour group also assisted in the excavation, for three days.

MtBlancoBldgFrontMThe contributions of Joe Taylor and his Mt. Blanco team, as well as significant contributions made by others were, apparently, of such minor consequence in Doug Phillips’ mind that none of them merited any mention at all. Doug Phillips rationalized that the minor contribution made by Pete DeRosa and his two boys, as well as the three days of work by the Vision Forum home school tour group, was so significant that it merited taking 100% of the credit for everything.

Joe Taylor isn’t one to make an issue over getting credit. However he was genuinely concerned that Doug Phillips’ false representations would come back to harm not just Doug Phillips, but potentially the entire creationist community. Joe attempted to contact Doug Phillips in July 2002 but, in classic Doug Phillips fashion, he insulated himself from exposure by having his Personal Assistant, Bob Renaud, respond to all Joe’s emails. So on July 29, 2002 Joe Taylor sent an email to Bob Renaud:

Bob:
Please consider these corrections. If Ken Ham or the Australians see one little mistake they might denounce your work, and you don’t want that.

But there was far more than just “one little mistake” that needed fixing. Joe explains why a number of Doug Phillips’ claims were scientifically false, and one was even rooted in evolutionary theory. He then goes on to explain why the claims made by Phillips and DeRosa of their personal responsibility for discovering and raising the allosaur were false. Joe Taylor did so in an exceedingly gracious manner:

8.     This is just a technicality, and just for your eyes, I told the Forbes they had an Allosaurus when they showed me some vertebrae a year and a half ago…

9.     Just for the record; it was the Mt. Blanco team who came with all the equipment the first time and excavated the 12 feet of spine etc. when we developed the site for AiG and CSI, before they abandoned it. lt was also the same equipment that excavated the neck, and jaws attached to the skull this spring. Our team member Jordan Hall found the first bit of the lower jaw that took us to the skull. We were digging the same spot together…

11.    Not to take anything away from Vision Forum’s story, but, Mt. Blanco has been working world class sites for many years. We have made them available to ICR, AiG, CSI, Bryan College, and many more creation groups, inviting them to take advantage of our sites for years, though with little success. We have been excavating on as many as a dozen dinosaurs and one mammoth for Carl Baugh’s Creation Evidence Museum for the past eight years or more. Last year alone, we excavated a large mastodon tusk, and two mammoths, not to mention the Allosaurus. We continued work on the 10 animals at Carl’s Colorado dig. And our new T-rex site in Montana this spring is ongoing. I’m not looking for y’all to say anything. I am just informing you so that someone doesn’t come up and ask any embarrassing questions.

All of this prudent advice came some four months prior to the release of Raising The Allosaur. Had Doug Phillips heeded Joe Taylor’s advice it would have saved Doug Phillips all those “embarrassing questions”. But a man who is greedy for gain isn’t one to listen to the voice of reason.

Doug Phillips responded the same day in his classic, I’m such a busy and important man that I can’t be bothered with speaking directly to mere commoners like yourself, so you’ll have to run everything through my Personal Assistant. Doug Phillips rebuffs and deflects all of Joe Taylor’s recommendations and assertions:

Dear Mr. Taylor:

Doug is rushing around from state to state and asked me to respond your letter. First, he wanted me to thank you for your kindness in taking the time to write with the below corrections and comments. He also wanted to acknowledge our gratitude for the expertise and years of experience that the Lord has given to you in the field of paleontology. Doug wanted me to respectfully disagree with points 1 through 4 in your note…

Concerning the remaining points, Doug wanted me to assure you that it is never his desire to rob another brother of the glory due to him, but that it has always been our understanding based on his relationship with Pete and Creation Expeditions, that this dig from beginning to end has been a Creation Expeditions dig for which you were an important part of the support team. Consequently, the information was not meant to exclude Mt. Blanco, but to emphasize Creation Expedition team which oversaw the project and was yoked with Vision Forum during the week that the Allosaurus skull was discovered. The articles were cleared with Creation Expedition and represent our best attempt to promote an accurate overview of the situation and to draw attention to the importance of this find which culminated with the dig that occurred during the week that Vision Forum and Creation Expeditions sponsored our joint dig. He mentioned that because of the formal working relationship between Creation Expeditions and Vision Forum, that any concerns should be discussed with Pete, from whom we take our queue.

Doug Phillips doesn’t take his queues from anyone, much less from someone as insignificant (to him) as Pete DeRosa. Doug Phillips gives the orders, he doesn’t take them. What Doug Phillips does regularly do, however, is to insulate himself by feigning that someone else is in charge of a project, and that he’s just following their lead. If the project fails he can blame them, but if the project succeeds he can share the credit, if not claim it all for himself. Anyone who knows Doug personally knows how he plays the game. It’s all about avoiding personal responsibility, but taking the credit if the project succeeds. Such was the case here. It was no accident that Bob Renaud cc’d Joe Taylor the following email to Doug Phillips:

From: Bob Renaud
Sent: Monday, July 29, 2002 11:38 AM
To: Doug Phillips
Subject: FW: ALLOSAUR INFO
This is absurd! Pete needs to have another talk with him.

In other words, “We’re calling the shots, Joe. You’d better get on board with the program.”

Doug Phillips declares that “this dig from beginning to end has been a Creation Expeditions dig” and that Joe Taylor and Mt. Blanco were merely “an important part of the support team”. It all reminds me of Yul Brynner’s imperious Pharaoh in The Ten Commandments: “So let it be written, so let it be done.”

It’s probably not as though Doug Phillips even comprehends that he’s lying. Doug Phillips probably really does believe the entire story that he’s fabricated. This is precisely how the mind of a pathological liar works. Once a pathological liar fabricates a story in his mind, no facts, or evidence, or testimony to the contrary will ever convince him otherwise. Doug Phillips had even written the script for his video so, therefore, it all had to be true. Doug Phillips probably even believes it when he says, “Doug wanted me to assure you that it is never his desire to rob another brother of the glory due to him”, even though that’s exactly what he was doing, and would continue doing.

As portrayed in Doug Phillips’ fraudumentary, it’s as though Joe Taylor and the Mt. Blanco team weren’t even there. Not only was Joe directing the entire project, he and his Mt. Blanco team had been there working on the site for weeks prior, including also working the site the prior year. They would continue working on the site for some time after Doug Phillips and his home school tour group had gone home.

This is classic Doug Phillips modus operandi – steal the credit from those men who actually deserve it, but give credit to himself, and to men who deserve very little credit in order to cement strategic business partnerships from which he can financially profit. Pete DeRosa had partnered with Doug Phillips to have Vision Forum use its half-million-name mail list to sell dino dig tour packages for $995 per person, the profits of which they would split between them. The profit motive from selling tour packages, as well as the profit from selling a “documentary”, became Doug Phillips’ overarching concern, and he would allow nothing to stand in the way of that. Doug Phillips’ insatiable greed would completely undermine what should have been a significant advancement for the cause of creation science. In the process Doug Phillips would ruin the livelihoods of a number of men who had dedicated themselves to the cause of creation science.

Raising The Allosaur begins with:

“The Colorado Morrison formation is part of a vast geological graveyard of bones that is world renowned to dinosaur hunters. But in May of 2002 an unusual group of 30 parents and their children journeyed to these badlands to participate in an experiment, a rare experiment in paleontology and a unique search for one of the most elusive dinosaurs, the Allosaur. Over the next sixty minutes we invite you to join our team on this journey of discovery and family renewal. Join us with Doug Phillips, President of the Vision Forum and Professor with the Institute for Creation Research. Join us with Pete DeRosa, the visionary founder of Creation Expeditions, a unique ministry to wed the science of paleontology with the training of future leaders. And join us with his family, including sons Pete Jr. and Mark, who with more than a decade of experience in field excavation will bring to this dig a wealth of knowledge.” Raising The Allosaur: The True Story of a Rare Dinosaur and the Home Schoolers Who Found It. (2:19)

The DeRosa’s, a home school family, certainly deserve at least some credit. The Vision Forum tour group also deserves some credit for moving some top soil and rocks, providing better access to three separate dino dig sites. However, Raising The Allosaur deceptively puts Pete DeRosa at the very center of events, portraying that it was he who directed the entire dig. That’s not what happened, nor would the DeRosas have been qualified or experienced to direct a large scale dinosaur excavation project. While the DeRosa’s did have several years of small fossil expedition experience, primarily plucking fossils  from the sands of the Peace River of their native Florida, such experience didn’t transfer well to large-scale dinosaur digs in the hard rock and sandstone of Colorado. Indeed, the DeRosas required training, and it was Joe Taylor who was training them. Prior to 2002 they had only been on two dinosaur digs, both of which were under the tutelage of Joe Taylor. Yet, according to Doug Phillips:

“Within minutes, I discovered that home schoolers Pete DeRosa and family, from Creation Expeditions, were committed to Creation paleontology, with hundreds of digs under their belt, more than ten years of experience in the field, and a vision to work together as a family.” 2003 Vision Forum Catalog, pg. 2

This claim was reinforced in the video. Doug Phillips is speaking here of  having first met the Pete DeRosa family on October 6, 2001 in Tampa Florida at the Back To Genesis Conference hosted by Institute for Creation Research (ICR). Pete DeRosa was Field Agent for Creation Studies Institute (CSI), founded by Tom DeRosa (no relation to Pete) and was supposedly representing CSI at the conference. As it turns out he was only representing his own interests, but doing so on CSI’s credit card. In all likelihood it was at this ICR conference that Doug Phillips first entered into a conspiracy with Pete DeRosa to claim credit for the  Dragon’s Den Allosaurus that had been discovered on Dana Forbes’ property the year before.

When Doug Phillips first met Pete Jr. and Mark DeRosa at the Back To Genesis Conference, they were 18 and 17 years old respectively. Doug Phillips portrays the two as not just paleontological prodigies, but prodigies who had accomplished something that most elderly seasoned paleontologists who have spent much of their lives in the field haven’t accomplished: “hundreds of digs under their belt”.

Joe TaylorDeRosa boys

Pete DeRosa Jr, Joe Taylor, Mark DeRosa

Why is it that Doug Phillips gave the students in training total credit, but their teacher Joe Taylor, who was also directing the dig, wasn’t mentioned or shown in the video a single time, not even in the film credits? Amazingly enough, even the DeRosa’s dog is given film credit! No doubt much of it had to do with Doug’s tour package partnership with Pete DeRosa. “For the love of money is the root of all evil”.

The very title of the movie, Raising The Allosaur, is duplicitous. We are never shown any video footage of any Allosaurus bones being excavated, let alone any bones being raised, nor of the other two dinosaurs mentioned in the video. There are a few still-photos inserted toward the end of the fraudumenatary, but for the most part they aren’t even representative of what Doug claims they are. For example a photo that Phillips claims is of “loading the skull” was actually taken the year before of the Mt. Blanco team moving the tail down the hill to be loaded on a truck and carried off to Mt. Blanco for restoration.

The strange absence of any video footage showing the raising of any allosaur bones isn’t due to any lack of video footage having been taken of those events. There is plenty of footage of the excavation, field jacketing, raising, and loading of Allosaurus bones into the truck to take them to the Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum for restoration. The problem for Doug Phillips is that all that video footage was taken by the Mt. Blanco team, and it tells a completely different story from what Doug Phillips tells in his fraudumentary.

Doug Phillips knew of the Mt. Blanco team’s extensive video footage and photos but never contacted Joe Taylor to receive copies of any of it, and for good reason – it would have been impossible to use any of it while continuing to portray that Phillips and his home schoolers were responsible for discovering, excavating, and raising the allosaur.

In order to counter the lies contained in Raising The Allosaur, Joe Taylor began the process of creating his own documentary, The Truth About Raising The Allosaur. However, due to legal threats and coercion by Doug Phillips, Joe Taylor was prevented from releasing his own video documentary.

Further debunking Doug Phillips’ claim that, “They [the Vision Forum tour group] make the biggest dinosaur discovery of the year”, as well as the film’s subtitle, “the Home Schoolers Who Found It” is the fact that a large portion of the Allosaurus had already been removed in September 2001 when some 12 feet of the Allosaurus’ vertebrate was dug up, field jacketed, and transported to the Mt. Blanco Museum for restoration. The dig team consisted of Joe Taylor (Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum), Don Yaeger (Mt. Blanco), Don Ensign (Mt. Blanco), Dave Hall (Mt. Blanco), Phillip Hall (Mt. Blanco), Jordan Hall (Mt. Blanco), Chantell Lines (Mt. Blanco), Tom DeRosa (President, Creation Studies Institute, no relation to Pete DeRosa), Mike Zovath (VP, Answers In Genesis), Stephanie Zovath (AiG), Buddy Davis (AiG), Dave Babbitt (professional surveyor), and Terry Beh. Assisting and being trained by Joe Taylor were Pete DeRosa, Pete Jr. and Mark DeRosa. This happened some 7 months prior to Doug Phillips and his home school tour group even showing up. Doug Phillips knew this, and yet his “documentary” portrays that it was his home school group “Who Found It“.

One of the excavators who worked on the allosaur site in September 2001 and May 2002 was Terry Beh. In Allosaurus: The true story of one of the most significant fossil finds in creationist history, Terry Beh documented his on-site experiences:

“One of the greatest finds in the history of creationist paleontology was made in the ‘backyard’ of a Christian family living in a remote area of Colorado a few years ago. An Allosaurus skeleton, including one of the largest and most complete skulls ever found, was excavated from the jutting hills and up-tilted layers of prehistoric muds, clays and sandstones of the Jurassic Morrison Formation bordering Skull Creek Basin near the tiny and appropriately named town of Dinosaur. Beginning with what appeared as a series of ‘divine appointments’ and a historic show of unity, members of many different creationist groups were involved in the discovery and removal of these bones. Sadly, that togetherness soon deteriorated into partisan wrangling and selfish positioning for profit and control.” (pg. 1)
Douglas W. Phillips, Esq. was at the center of fomenting that “partisan wrangling and selfish positioning for profit and control.” Doug Phillips was the fly in the ointment that spoiled and ruined what should have been a significant paleontological discovery for the creationist cause.
“By spring of 2002, the clarity of purpose and vision—not to mention any semblance of unity—that had characterized the previous fall dig had become as murky as a Florida swamp. When Taylor and Yaeger arrived at the Forbes property separately at what they knew to be the agreed upon time (May 10th), each was intercepted by by Pete DeRosa and told that they’d come too early, that some filming was going on at the site, and that they’d have to go elsewhere for a couple of days. Scratching their heads, Taylor and Yaeger reluctantly withdrew and set themselves up elsewhere. They knew that the DeRosas had hooked up with Doug Phillips, head of a home schooling group called Vision Forum from San Antonio, and that 30 or so folks from VF had paid to work the dig site (and that this was partly how DeRosa had arranged funding for the excavation). However, the seeming ‘miscue’ made no sense to them.” (ibid. pg. 3)

It didn’t make sense at the time; but after the release of Raising The Allosaur it all started adding up. Doug Phillips had arranged to shoo everyone away from the dig site for two days so that he could get enough footage for his scripted and staged fraudumentary, minus all the numerous people who were actually responsible for the dig.

One of the most significant aspects of the Allosaurus discovery, especially for young earth creationists, was Doug Phillips’ claim that:

“The excavators found remarkable proof for a ‘recent’ death of the dinosaur. Buried
in and around this fully articulated dinosaur was unfossilized organic material. Because the evidence is that the material was deposited at the same time as the dinosaur, it points to the fact that the creature is not millions, but thousands of years old!” Vision Forum Catalog, 2003 (pg. 48)

Given all the other lies that Doug Phillips told in Raising The Allosaur, how is anyone to believe that this claim of “unfossilized organic material” isn’t just another lie too? What evidence did Doug Phillips use to substantiate this claim? He used the testimony furnished to him by Joe Taylor, in an email Taylor sent Phillips on May 16, 2002, just four days prior to Doug Phillips’ news release:

“This is not all. There is wood from trees mixed with it. The amazing thing is that some of them are both petrified and un-petrified in the same piece of wood! The animal is lying on a bed of leaves and plant debris. On another dinosaur excavation of the same Morrison group of animals, a huge log was excavated. The log was totally petrified, but the bark was not. It was carbon dated at 5,000 years.”

Significant facts contained in Joe Taylor’s email found their way into the May 20, 2002 Vision Forum News Release. However Doug Phillips never once mentioned Taylor as his source, or any other members of the excavation team. Rather than crediting Joe Taylor for the very significant discovery he and his team had unearthed, Doug Phillips makes it appear as if it were actually a direct quote from Pete DeRosa:

“The evidence strongly points to a relatively recent and catastrophic event similar to that described in the Bible as the Flood of Noah’s day,” said Pete DeRosa.

“We found a complete section of vertebrae more than twelve feet in length which was fully articulated. The dinosaur appears to be in much the same position as he was at the time of his death and burial, which must have been virtually instantaneous, and caused by a catastrophic event. Not only was this fully articulated dinosaur found laying in a bed of leaves and plant debris, but there is wood from trees mixed in among the bones, some of which contains petrified and non-petrified elements in the same piece of wood. If this creature were millions of years old, the evidence would look quite different.” Vision Forum News Release, May 20, 2002

Doug Phillips also falsely credited Dr. Bruce Bellamy as the person responsible for finding the Allosaurus skull. But this has been refuted by many, including even the Bellamy family:

“Based on notes which Taylor had made and shared of where the skull would likely be located if it had not eroded away, the Vision Forum group exposed a bit more bone. Dr. Bruce Bellamy, given credit in Phillips’ film for finding the skull, did in fact dig where he was told to and found the first articulated neck bone. But the Bellamy family has told witnesses that they tried to tell Phillips they didn’t find the skull as stated in the movie. At the time of this dig, Phillips and his tour group had no idea what it was that they had found. Others present concur.”

Doug Phillips masquerades as a creation scientist, and in particular a young-earth creation scientist. However, because of his “selfish positioning for profit and control” he brought scandal, shame and disrepute to the entire field of creation science, like no one ever had before. Nobody has ever sabotaged creationism like Doug Phillips has. The Darwinists never had a better friend.

For the majority of Vision Forum patrons, the sudden disappearance of Raising The Allosaur piqued few concerns on their part. All was soon forgotten and anyone who continued raising concerns about it was branded “a gossip“, “hateful” and “bitter”. That’s exactly how Joe Taylor was portrayed. Doug Phillips even claimed that “internet assassins” were attacking not just him, but his family too. No one, other than Doug Phillips, had even mentioned anything about Beall and the Phillips children. They had nothing to do with Raising The Allosaur. Doug Phillips has made a lot of money marketing “women and children first”. Yet he won’t hesitate playing the victim by invoking the names of his wife and children, using them as human shields to deflect criticism away from himself. His whiny and unmanly family victimization stories were countered by accusations that he was just hiding behind his wife’s skirt. Indeed, that’s exactly what he was doing.

Vision Forum loyalists went right on enriching Doug Phillips for another ten years. Had they not been so naive Doug Phillips could have been stopped long ago. Raising The Allosaur wasn’t just an aberration, a rare and unusual departure from Doug Phillips’ true character. Nor was it just some temporary lapse of judgement. Rather, Raising The Allosaur is entirely representative of Doug Phillips’ ethics, morals, and his methods of “taking dominion”. Raising The Allosaur goes to prove several things:

  1. Doug Phillips is a hypocrite and a fraud.
  2. Doug Phillips is a self-serving man who is eager to steal credit from others.
  3. Doug Phillips uses people for his own selfish gains, stealing credit for things he has no personal responsibility for. While using others they are made to feel like they are the best of friends. Once he’s done using them he discards them and treats them as enemies.
  4. Being a religious sociological cult leader, Doug Phillips has often made a show of his religiosity. He rationalizes his sinful behavior by twisting and perverting God’s Word for his own selfish objectives.
  5. Doug Phillips promotes/markets various causes, such as creation science and Christian home education, not out of genuine personal conviction, but out of greed and personal enrichment.
  6. Doug Phillips has discredited the very causes that he claims to support, such as Christian home schooling and creation science. He has brought great shame and humiliation to those who support those causes.
  7. When confronted for his duplicity and corruption Doug Phillips throws his “Esq.” around and threatens to sue for defamation. He is a litigious bully and makes a mockery of the American justice system, not to mention what the Bible has to say (1 Cor 6:6-8).
  8. None of these things are recent developments. Doug Phillips has been this way since he arrived in San Antonio in 1998, and likely for some years prior. The fact that he stole the HSLDA mail list from which he launched Vision Forum is a clear indication of that.

Doug Phillips is hasty to resort to legal intimidation. He has legally threatened dozens of people. To my knowledge Doug Phillips has never actually taken anyone to trial. Rather, he only threatens to take them to court, but out of the goodness of his heart he agrees to settle with them out of court, provided they keep their mouths shut, i.e. they must sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement. Are Non-Disclosure Agreements biblical? In certain cases an NDA may be appropriate, and they may not necessarily in all cases be expressly unbiblical. However, they should never be used if the underlying motive is to silence critics and cover up unrepentant sin. The purposes for which Doug Phillips has so frequently coerced the signing of NDA’s is only intended to silence those who would speak out against his egregious sins and hold him accountable for his duplicity and corruption. Doug Phillips’ habitual use of NDAs has allowed him to cover up a huge amount of sin, both his own sins and the sins of his accomplices.

I know of many people Doug Phillips has under Non-Disclosure, including former Vision Forum Interns, former Vision Forum employees, and former business associates. The total number is in the dozens, if not hundreds. These people live in fear that if they say anything derogatory of Doug Phillips, no matter how truthful and factual is it, he will sue them for defamation. Proving a defamation case is far more difficult than most people realize. Most plaintiffs lose such cases. Nevertheless, our “justice” system permits filing such lawsuits, no matter how lacking in merit a case may be, and many people have been financially ruined defending themselves in the process, even when they win. The mere threat of such legal action has frightened most people from coming forward and sharing what they know about Doug Phillips. Joe Taylor is one of those rare people who hasn’t been afraid to speak out.

I’ve spoken before of the fact that Doug Phillips is a religious sociological cult leader, and that like so many other cult leaders he employs various mind control techniques to keep his followers docile and compliant. Instilling fear is one of the most common control tactics used by cult leaders. One method Doug Phillips has used to instill fear at Boerne Christian Assembly and Vision Forum is imprecatory prayer. Anyone subjected to hearing their spiritual leader from his pulpit call down on his enemies the wrathful judgments of God is being subjected to a powerful form of mind control. Such cult members live in fear that, should they ever defy the will of the leader, they too will be singled out by name and cursed from the pulpit. Jen Fishburne has stated that, while she and her family were members, they regularly witnessed Doug Phillips leading Boerne Christian Assembly in imprecatory prayers, calling down the vengeance of God on numerous people, including Joe Taylor. I don’t believe that God answers such prayers, but members of religious sociological cults do.

This story is such a tangled web of duplicity and legal chicanery that I have found it quite challenging to cover the subject matter adequately in just one article. However, I’ve put forth my best effort to condense the most significant issues here.

With respect to the Allosaurus, it should be noted that Pete DeRosa of Creation Expeditions is probably as guilty of fraud and duplicity as Doug Phillips. Phillips couldn’t have pulled off his fraudumentary without the aid of DeRosa, and DeRosa couldn’t have pulled off his scams without the backing of Phillips. Indeed, not only were they co-conspirators in defrauding Joe Taylor and others of the notoriety and rights to the bones they deserved for discovering and excavating the allosaur, but from the significant amount of income that should rightfully have gone to them. On top of everything else they caused immense injury to the Forbes family, both financially and to their emotional health. The Forbes were ultimately forced to abandon their dreams and sell off their property.

Raising The Allosaur provided Doug Phillips, and to a lesser extent, Pete DeRosa, with a great deal of undeserved fame and fortune. To this date neither Doug Phillips or Peter DeRosa have ever admitted to their deception or confessed their sins related to this matter, much less repented, apologized and made restitution to those they so grieviously injured and robbed.

This blog is focused on Doug Phillips, which is why this article hasn’t gone into a great amount of detail on Pete DeRosa. Moreover, it’s not particularly necessary since Pete DeRosa has already been exposed through the efforts of Randy and Mary Gavin at Raising The Truth. Perhaps the single most valuable resource that the Gavins have provided are their Video Interviews With Those That Excavated The Allosaur. Those interviews directly corroborate this story and are well worth reviewing.

________________________

Additional Supporting Documents and References:

Mt. Blanco News – Allosaur

Vision Forum Schedule for Dragon’s Den Dig

Joe Taylor email to Pat Roy (ICR Radio), 10-13-02

Carl Baugh letter to Joe Taylor, 06-02-03

Dave Babbitt grid survey of the Allosaurus

Dana Forbes responds to email about Raising The Allosaur

Fossil find could lead to ruin of Crosbyton museum owner

Home School Expedition Uncovers Rare Allosaur and Giant Sauropod

Father and Son Dig Trip to Find Dinosaurs’ Bones

Other Related Blog Articles:

Raising The Truth

Doug Phillips’ Raising The Allosaur, A Review of Vision Forum Film Flim Flam

Raising the Allosaurus and Bordering On Deception

________________________

Post Script:

Some may ask, “Why are you telling this story when others have already told it before?” Yes, others have told this story before, but (with no disrespect intended toward anyone else) quite frankly, I haven’t seen anyone tell it very well. In my view it’s an extremely important story and it’s deserved considerably more effort than I’ve seen anyone else put forth so far.

Jen and I have received several comments and emails asking why we keep posting stories about Doug Phillips. “You’re just beating a dead horse. He’s down for the count. This just makes you look bitter. Let it go. You just need to forgive. Move on.”

Perhaps an entire article on the naive philosophy that inspires such questions might also be in order. For the time being let me just say that no one should be so gullible as to believe that Doug Phillips is “down for the count”, as though that means he will stay down. Doug Phillips will be back, or at least he will try very hard to make a comeback, and we should look for that to happen in 2-3 years. Make it one year if he’s especially audacious about it. Rather than being the time to “let it go” this is the time to draw attention to at least some of the most significant things Jen and others have been trying to expose about Doug Phillips for years, but for various reasons those warnings went largely ignored. Now is the time because now it’s not as easy for people to ignore those warnings, as it was in the past.

Many charismatic cult leaders, like Doug Phillips, have gotten away with horrendous sins and even crimes, often for many years, largely by maintaining a highly polished public image. Even when a scandal does erupt, such as the Raising The Allosaur scandal did back in 2004, a brilliant cult leader like Doug Phillips, with virtually unlimited resources at his disposal, and aided by his in-house PR team, can often clamp the lid down hard on a scandal and reduce to it a mere “misunderstanding.” In Doug Phillips’ case he can even turn it around and claim that he’s the victim, and that his family is being attacked (even though that never happened), thereby gaining him even more support from the gullible.

Because of the gullibility and trusting nature of many of his followers, it requires many proofs to convince them of the true character of Douglas W. Phillips, Esq. and, in my view, Raising The Allosaur is a key part of that. Cheating on his wife for a dozen years, all while making millions of dollars promoting marital fidelity and biblical family values, would be another such example of the magnitude of Doug Phillips’ hypocrisies. The problem is that in a year or two too many people will only remember it as an “extra-marital affair”, rather than the clergy sexual abuse that it really is. Even now there are too many claiming that, “It could have happened to any of us.” However, few of us could have perpetrated and profited from such a fraud as represented by Raising The Allosaur without a tinge of conscience, as Phillips has. It helps reveal a despicable pattern of abuse of power, deceit and manipulation, and I shudder when I hear people trying to trivialize such egregious sin by a “Christian leader”.

There are extremely valuable lessons to be learned from Raising The Allosaur, not only about Doug Phillips’ true character, but also about wolves in sheep’s clothing, in general. If Christians refuse to learn anything from stories like this, then it’s certain that Phillips—and others like him—will have no trouble making comeback after comeback, and continue to prey on the innocent. And that is neither just nor right.

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242 Responses to “Raising The Allosaur, A Doug Phillips Fraudumentary”

  1. Grace Alone Says:

    Thanks for your hard work TW. I had heard confirmations of this story from a close friend years ago. Thanks for exposing it all so well and clearly.

  2. Walking in Freedom Says:

    Whoa! Thanks for the information! I too had heard bits and pieces of this years ago and it’s good to get the whole story.

    • T.W. Eston Says:

      Actually this is only part of the story. There’s quite a bit more to it. The full story would require several articles, but trundling out all the details might get a bit tedious for some readers. I’ve tried to strike a balance between giving adequate information while not overwhelming the reader with excessive detail.

      I may or may not post a follow up article at some point that gives additional details on Doug’s legal machinations surrounding the allosaur, particularly those against Joe Taylor.

      • Half Truths Abound Says:

        You should do something on the legal machinations, but make sure it’s accurate…

        • Jen Says:

          HTA, if you have any additional information you wish to share with us regarding the legal aspects, please feel free to write us. Thanks!

  3. EyesWideOpen Says:

    Sick, sick, sick. How does he sleep at night?

    • T.W. Eston Says:

      If he had a conscience it would most certainly interfere with his sleep. However, sociopaths don’t have a conscience to trouble their sleep. Unfortunately, it’s likely that Doug Phillips sleeps quite soundly.

  4. EyesWideOpen Says:

    I just noticed that Peter and Kelly Bradrick are no longer on Facebook. Weird.

    • Michael Says:

      Ya think possibly now that Papa Brown is working to consolidate power that he might not want the kids saying something that might implicate him further? Try and keep the sheeple compliant.

    • Humbled by Grace Says:

      Peter and Kelly have moved to Washington state and are attending church with Peter’s mom and dad.

      • nowoolovertheeyes Says:

        I concur that what you are saying is true………

        • nowoolovertheeyes Says:

          I also cannot help but think/wonder that this huge move & transition is directly connected with the Doug fiasco and his encounter with Doug (which wasn’t pretty at all…………). I think it changed him and turned upside down everything he bought hook, line & sinker. I know it did for us as well but we have been seeing concerning things for a while now and have been pulling away anyways…………Hopefully it will allow them to figure out who they are as a married couple and Christians………..w/o the VF/NCFIC label.

      • Michael Says:

        I hope these kids are able to sort through all the garbage and just learn to really trust Christ. The best thing they could do for their personal relationship with God and for their marriage and kids is to get as far away from this group and just learn to live life without all the noise from the NCFIC crowd. I wish them well.

  5. Michael Says:

    “Never” not “nevertheless.” Spell check is a tool of the devil.

  6. Lori Baldwin Says:

    Keep it coming! Any way you can help prevent this lying hypocritical abuser from making a comeback is worth the effort. Great job on this article and the other ones too.

  7. Sarah Says:

    Here’s my problem with the above accusations. I have a very deep respect for Ken Ham. He is a brilliant man. If even half of what you are saying above was true Ken Ham would have been all over Doug Phillips like dog on meat. He also would have publically discredited Doug Phillps and Vision Forum. He most definitly would not have had a business relationship with Doug and Vision Forum. I feel like in order to believe all you have written above is like saying Ken Ham is an idiot and that I would never believe to be true. Anyway that’s my two cents worth 🙂

    • Maxwell Says:

      Sarah, at one time I too held Mr. Ham in high regard but, the truth is, he appears to run his own little kingdom in similar ways as Doug Phillips (see here for starters: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_controversy_between_Answers_in_Genesis_and_Creation_Ministries_International ). You must realize that people who run businesses are in it to make money – even when they title the business as a “ministry”. When someone’s livelihood (business/ministry) is at stake, things get ugly quick.

      • Sarah Says:

        Lol I don’t ever rely on Wikipedia as a truthful source of info

        • Maxwell Says:

          There’s plenty of foot notes that point to the verification. Not hard to verify the bulk of the entry. You’re free to ignore it but it *did* happen.

    • OtOLi Says:

      Which specific accusations are you referring to? The bulk of the article is simply a factual account of what happened (or didn’t happen 😉 ).

      Regarding Ken Ham, there are all kinds of plausible explanations.
      1) Ham is not even aware of the situation.
      2) Ham is aware of the situation, but doesn’t have time to deal with it.
      3) Ham is aware of the situation, but has been deceived by Phillips charm (as many others obviously have).
      4) Ham is aware of the situation and knows Phillips is a fraud, but doesn’t want to get involved in a costly legal battle.
      5) Ham is aware of the situation is in cahoots with Phillips.

      Obviously some of these scenarios are more likely than others. I’m sure others could suggest other possibilities as well. The point is that there are all kinds of reasons why Ham may not “have been all over Doug Phillips” even though Phillips clearly deceived people.

      • Sarah Says:

        You really don’t think Ken Ham was watching a fossil find like this extremely closely?

        • OtOLi Says:

          No doubt he was. Still, there are many plausible explanations. I would put “Doug Phillips was completely honest and upright about the whole situation” at about the same likelihood as #1 above.

          I mean, are you honestly suggesting that Ken Ham’s judgment (which we really don’t even know, other than he hasn’t publicly condemned Phillips) is more important than the eyewitness testimony of multiple people who were actually there?

      • Half Truths Abound Says:

        I suspect #3. Many, many are in that category…

        • Maxwell Says:

          I suspect that there is a 6th category… one that no one wants to acknowledge… that is very similar to #3:

          6) Ham is aware of the situation, but is cut from the same cloth as Phillips, knows all too well how the game is played, has his own loyal subjects and has skeletons in his own closet — some of which Phillips may know about and it is better to avoid the situation than risk exposure.

          I find that the more I see of such men, the more obvious it becomes that they are frauds… all of them… out for money, power, control, etc. Their mission is to sell books, run empires, be the honored guests at conventions, and have their egos stroked. Their followers will support them through it all and any that don’t support them are immediately branded as heretics, berated, and cast aside. This is not Christianity… this is the world with Christian words sprinkled over it in an attempt to hide the flavor of rotting flesh. This is what American Mainstream Christianity has become — a massive business with that down-home, Christian flavor — and it make me sick to my stomach.

        • Half Truths Abound Says:

          Possibly, but I know the charm is a factor. I’ve seen it in action. I’m trying to not be completely cynical about everyone!

    • Theretoo4 Says:

      Ken Ham knew all about Mr. Phillips and the Allosaur mess. AiG sent three of their staff to the site in 2001 who filmed and helped excavate half of the Allosaur six months before Phillips ever got there and claimed that his home school kids found the Allosaur. AiG was originally sponsors of the dig and opted out due to the mess. In 2007 Ken was asked not to promote Mr. Phillips but decided to anyway. Ken Ham knows all about DeRosa.

      • C. Fort Says:

        Maxwell makes an excellent point in a Feb. 10th @ 10:02 a.m. post that it’s very likely Ham is “cut from the same cloth as Phillips” with “skeletons in his own closet.” Others have already posted Wikipedia links about Ken Ham’s deceptive practices with a creation group in Australia, but here’s another link on that story telling how Ken Ham stole the Australian creation group’s U.S. mailing list:

        http://web.archive.org/web/20071007034757/http:/www.christianfaithandreason.com/june_creationmag.htm

        In a move even more audacious than Doug Phillips’ theft of the HSLDA list, however, Ken Ham had never even given the Australians access to their own U.S. list! So they basically lost all those contacts.

        The poster Maxwell goes on to say that he’s come to the conclusion that the men running these so-called “Christian ministries” are frauds, who are just after the “money, power, and control” – and I wholeheartedly concur. Just looking at the price of admission to Ken Ham’s museum in Kentucky was enough to convince me of that a couple of years ago. Good grief, for a family with teenagers, the cost would be enormous. It sure looks like these charlatans are mostly about ‘ministering’ to their own pocketbooks and egos.

        The work that T.W. Eston and Jen are doing here to expose these frauds is greatly appreciated!

    • T.W. Eston Says:

      Sarah, I think it’s unfortunate that you brought Ken Ham into this in order to discredit my article. I certainly wasn’t going to mention anything about Ken Ham or anyone else, other than who I’ve already named in the article. But the fact is there are others who are complicit. However, I do my best to keep my articles focused on Doug Phillips because that’s the focus of this blog.

      Unfortunately there are many people who are tied into Doug Phillips, some quite innocently, like the Fisher twins. Some are guilty co-conspirators, like Pete DeRosa. Others are guilty by remaining silent when they knew exactly what was going on.

      “He is a brilliant man” may be completely true, but there are plenty of brilliant men who have failed to confront the corrupt actions of their associates. You presume far too much that Ken Ham “would have publically discredited Doug Phillps and Vision Forum.”

      It’s not my place to accuse Ken Ham of anything, and I’ll do my best to avoid doing so; but such sweeping statements as you make here can’t go unchallenged. Can we assume that Ken Ham was able to remain objective in his dealings with Doug Phillips when he was given the George Washington Man Of The Year Award? I’m not going to say such an award definitely clouded Ken Ham’s judgement, but such things often are the result, and public awards are often the very means used by corrupt politicians like Doug Phillips to secure the silence of men who might otherwise expose them. This is no accusation against Ken Ham – just an observation of how Doug Phillips works, and it’s worked quite well in most cases.

      It’s also noteworthy that Ken Ham is the one who ultimately wound up with this very same Allosarus skull. Ken Ham may have had very good personal reasons for keeping his mouth shut about what he knew, and in the end he may have made out quite well for it. I don’t know enough about Ken Ham’s role in all this to say with absolute certainty. But in my view it’s rather suspect.

      • Sarah Says:

        @TW I just finished reading Phillips Halls eyewitness interpretation of the events surrounding the dig. It sounds to me like the disagreement was between Joe Taylor and Pete Derosa. Wasn’t Vision Forum making the movie at Pete’s request. I’m not saying Doug handled the situation the way that he should have but possibly Pete is responsible for a lot of the drama surrounding Raising the Allosaurus. I am not trying to discredit your entire article I’m only pointing out that sometimes we don’t know what is going on behind the scenes. How do we know Joe Taylor isn’t lying? You are accusing Doug of being a pathological liar amongst other things and yet we are supposed to take Joe Taylor’s word on this.

        • Jen Says:

          Sarah, what, specifically, are you questioning? We have many documents and many witnesses. What exactly would you like to know?

          While Joe Taylor was part of this story, the story is about Doug and what Doug did or did not do. Rather than come here accusing Joe Taylor of lying, perhaps a better approach would be to ask questions to find out whatever it is that you would like to know. Thanks!

        • Sarah Says:

          @ Jen where exactly did I accuse Joe of lying? I said how do we know he isn’t lying? For instance, look at how Doug Phillips was behaving behind closed doors with Cassandra. I’m saying it’s possibly Joe Taylor didn’t behave the way he should have in the case of the Allosaurus. Things aren’t always as they seem. Surely we can agree upon that much. And I’m not all down on Joe Taylor anyways, my main suspicions are with Pete, he seems to be the ringleader in all this. I just finished watching the movie online. It seemed to be Pete’s baby not Doug’s. I’m willing to entertain the possibility that Pete screwed Joe Taylor over not Doug. And considering how much I dislike Doug right now that’s saying something 🙂

        • T.W. Eston Says:

          Sarah, you are correct about Pete DeRosa playing a part in all this. I don’t know how I could have made that any more plain when I said, “With respect to the Allosaurus, it should be noted that Pete DeRosa of Creation Expeditions is probably as guilty of fraud and duplicity as Doug Phillips.” However, you are quite wrong for your attempts to cast doubt in readers’ minds here by discrediting my story without any basis for doing so.

          You are also quite wrong to portray this as Pete DeRosa being the ringleader. Pete DeRosa is most certainly a co-conspirator; but his limited intellect hardly qualifies him to be the criminal mastermind, nor would Doug’s ego permit him to be Pete’s lackey. Pete DeRosa a dullard and an amateur by comparison to Doug Phillips. That’s not to say that Pete didn’t cause great harm; he did. It’s to say that Doug Phillips is the mastermind. The fact that it was Doug, and not Pete, that profited to the tune of well over one million dollars, and Pete’s profits were a mere pittance by comparison, should be proof enough of that.

          I spent many hours researching this story and personally speaking with a number of eye-witnesses. I even spoke with one of the DeRosa boys. That conversation confirmed that everything I’ve said in this article is true. That conversation also made it plain that Doug Phillips personally and very directly had a huge impact on shaping the character development of the DeRosa boys. They both lived in Doug’s home for over a year, and like Doug Phillips, they are entirely unrepentant for their own part in Raising The Allosaur, defrauding Joe Taylor and the Forbes, and others I have mentioned in this story. It was Doug Phillips who was the tutor, the teacher, the mastermind.

          This is a story I’ve been quite familiar with for over ten years. Your knowledge, by comparison, is superficial at best. When you have something substantive and credible to offer that directly challenges any single point of this article feel, free to offer it. I never mind a legitimate challenge. I do mind baseless naysaying that serves no constructive purpose.

        • T.W. Eston Says:

          “I said how do we know he isn’t lying?” For you to even ask such a question presumes that you know something of Joe Taylor’s character. Do you Sarah? I can confidently say that you don’t know anything about Joe Taylor, nor could you possibly know him personally. How do I know that you don’t know Joe Taylor or his reputation? Because if you did you would never presume to ask such a provocative question.

          Anyone who knows Joe Taylor knows that he’s anything but a liar. Joe has his faults, but one thing he is not is a liar. One of Joe’s biggest faults is that he’s too trusting of people, and that’s what set him up to be taken advantage of by Doug Phillips and Pete DeRosa.

          I know Joe Taylor is not a liar by knowing the man’s reputation, and the fruits of his life. Joe Taylor has a reputation for integrity and honesty.

      • Eva Says:

        Sounds like the whole fossil skeleton to me includin the skull
        http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/2013/10/18/news-dinosaur-fossil

        • Theretoo4 Says:

          The Forbes Brown Dirt Allosaur, renamed Ebenezer, consisted of acomplete skull and jaws, a complete, though damaged, vertebral column, most of the chevrons of the tail, possibly part of the illium, possibly one shoulder blade and possibly one arm. The tip of the tail is probably still missing. There were no ribs except on the neck. There are no hind legs. There was a coalified limb at its chest. This was all excavated in 2001 and 2002 by the Mt. Blanco Team. It was a 50% skeleton.

      • Grace alone Says:

        In other interesting news, Ken Ham is the keynote speaker for HSLDA’s National Leader’s Conference this year. The conference will be held at the Creation Museum. Just rec’d my postcard today….although I’m not hsing nor a leader anymore.

      • OtOLi Says:

        Question…if Ken Ham wanted to discredit/expose Doug Phillips without having to explicitly say so publicly, can anyone think of a better way than by prominently displaying the Allosaurus which so clearly testifies to DP’s fraud and deception?

        • Walking in Freedom Says:

          Not totally sure I understand what you’re saying…could you please expound?

        • OtOLi Says:

          Publicly displaying the Allosaur naturally leads to, “Hey, where did they find/get this from?” People will look into the story behind it. And as they do so, they will come across the whole sad story.

    • Dana Forbes Says:

      We had Ken Ham on the property and originally had an agreement with AIG and Creation Studies Institute to partner with us in digging dinosaurs and showing God’s creation. AIG pulled out in the fall of 2001. We finally understood (much later) that they pulled out because of an agreement that had been made between CSI and Vision Forum to conduct a digging tour on our land. I believe Ken Ham and the folks at AIG felt their position was compromised and they simply chose to pursue other avenues. I don’t know how much they chose to keep up with the shenanigans taking place after they were no longer connected.

      • Lovesthetruth Says:

        Dana I am so sorry this happened to your family. Your response is so Christlike and very inspiring to me. We can learn from this, and each other!!

  8. Jean Says:

    I have heard bits and pieces of this story – now I have the full story! I finally understand the time frame of the events and I finally understand the extent of the fraud. I am so sorry for Mr. Taylor.
    Thank you, Mr. Easton for this well-written and thoughtful article.
    I am angry – at all those people from Vision Forum who took part of this terrible act of fraud. What kind of example was this incident for the young people who attended the dig – and knew that this film was a lie?
    Mr, Easton, please comment on the people from San Antonio who attended this dig, other than DP. What happened to the parents who did not confront this lie? Why did they allow this to continue? Where were the other participants from VF? Why? Why? Do they now understand the damage that was done because of this man’s deceit?
    Have you talked to any of these people? Do they ‘get it’?

  9. Jean Says:

    Mr. Easton, I don’t intend for you to name anyone specifically. Simply asking what were they thinking? What are they thinking now?

    • T.W. Eston Says:

      Jean, I had attempted to contact the “Dragon’s Den Expedition Members”, as listed in the film’s credits, but so far have been unsuccessful in reaching any but one of them. I very much welcome their participation here. They can offer their input and feedback and do so while remaining anonymous.

      If anyone knows how to contact any of them please send them a link to this article. Their names are shown in the title credits of the film. However I’ll spare them any additional embarrassment by not posting their names here.

      One gentleman who was part of the VF tour group did email me yesterday. I don’t think he’ll mind my quoting a bit from his email, provided I don’t identify him by name:

      TW,

      Great article. I rushed through it this morning… I did not see anything that contradicted my experience or what I’ve heard… I probably won’t post for now. Not sure what I’d say. I see that ‘Observant’ has pretty much told my story.”

  10. Observant Says:

    I am aware of a father/ex VF employee who was on the dig. His son heard the discrepancies at BCA and questioned them from what I understand to his dad. Dad went to work and confronted/questioned the statements to DP and was immediately let go of his position.In other words fired! Once again the same DP way of doing things and the same threats to folks. Jean, you wonder why, well this is yet another example of why. Those who went to BCA and worked for VF knew the consequences if you spoke out against the king and his court! Yes, some of them got it- the hard way with a family to support and no income. This particular father had a large family too.

  11. FreeatLast Says:

    Great article and a fine summary. I wonder what guys like Bob Renaud think now about their covering for the boss. While Phillips needs to come clean, so do his many enablers, including the recent ones that stood by as Bob Sarratt and Phillips attacked and hurt many families. I especially feel for the young people that have been hurt; some have even turned their backs on the Truth and while all of this blame doesn’t belong to Phillips and Sarratt alone; what they did sure didn’t help these young people.

    If Phillips was as repentant as his elders say, Phillips would have contacted a lot of people that still haven’t heard from him. Also, Sarratt would no longer be in leadership at BCA because if Phillips was too really come clean, it would implicate Sarratt’s participation in wrongdoing. As long as Sarratt is head elder at BCA, don’t look for Phillips to fully confess the extent of his mistreatment of people because to do so would clearly implicate Sarratt. Phillips couldn’t have done and got away with what he did without a lot of help from a few key individuals that remain unrepentant along with Phillips. I wonder how they all sleep at night.

    • Not Fooled Anymore Says:

      FreeatLast, we could not agree more. As one of those families, we have and are experiencing all you mentioned and have not heard a peep of repentance towards our family at all. Sad and hurtful. Bob Sarrat should have stepped down and BCA should not even be meeting and should close it’s doors. We would like to know what if anything has been done with all the BCA tithe money they were keeping. Other than the bit of measly rent they paid, and a small sum each month to Bob and maybe to Doug, we heard. since they never gave out financial statements showing expenses and offerings, that the BCA account had upwards of $100,000.00. Whose name is that in since Doug founded BCA? A lot of unanswered questions there. We would like to know if that money is till there or if it has “disappeared.”

      Sadly, we are hearing that some folks who lived in this community and across the nation don’t even think any of this happened! How can that be? If not there are a lot of crazy why’s not answered and a lot of us families who all have the same stories. Also what about all those folks who little by little are speaking out who were also hurt and scared many years ago? People please stop denying all this happened. It did and it is very painful to those of us who went through it and in many ways still are to hear the plain ignorance going on and being spoken in regards to all of this. Adding insult to the injury there are many young adults questioning anything that has to do with Christianity. This is the result of his (Doug’s ) little mess he refuses to take any responsibility for and has left all of the parents to try to go through all this and bring their children back to Christ on top of their own pain and guilt for ever listening to the foolish man in the first place!

      Then there are all these men like Scott, Kevin, Vodie and such that just keep going right where Doug left off and are not missing a beat nor a conference paycheck! It is very painful to those of us who they have ignored and by their silence are denying all that happened and was done to all of us families. Our prayer is that families,fathers and mothers will wake up and stop giving and going to these men’s busnistries and get back to reading the Bible to your kids and the way things were when we started home schooling over 22 years ago!

      • Sarah Says:

        @ Notfooledanymore I couldn’t agree with you more that BCA needs to close its doors. To be clear I’m not a fan of Doug Phillips. However, I like to be careful what I believe and like to do my own research before I believe what I read 🙂

        • Dana Forbes Says:

          Sarah, the events related in this article did indeed happen. Like T.W. said, there were more people involved and Doug was surely not solely responsible for everything that happened on my property. Our desire as a family was to see our property be a great encouragement for the whole body of Christ,(as well as the secular world) not just a select few, as well as be something my family could actively take part in, but the selfish ambition in the hearts of some came to the surface. In some ways I think it was the Lord’s purpose to allow the depravity of men’s hearts to be revealed and be brought to the light and, hopefully, be dealt with. I say this humbly, knowing I have fallen short as much as anyone and that I am sure I made mistakes in this affair as well. We used to ask ourselves what else could we have done to keep this from happening as well as all the broken relationships and friendships that resulted. We eventually had to just move on and praise God through the pain.

        • Sarah Says:

          @Dana Forbes Thank you for such a respectful reply. I have no doubt at all the Doug mishandled Joe Taylor. The only point I was trying to make was that maybe maybe Doug got screwed over by Pete. I watched the video. I really didn’t think Doug was at his finest and he actually didn’t have a lot of screen time like he does in his recent documentaries. How do we know what Pete told Doug? Pete obviously wanted credit for the find.

      • Michael Says:

        NFA, I know your heart cries for justice and truth. Be encouraged that God has exposed evil already in a very dramatic way. His people are becoming more aware and are beginning to withdraw support. Over time people may become willingly ignorant but God has a long memory. “God’s wheels of justice turn slowly but they grind exceeding fine.” Nobody is getting away with anything here.

  12. MomT Says:

    In the video clip it sounds like DP is trying really hard to not sound like himself, but you can tell it is him. Weird. Why would he do this?

    • T.W. Eston Says:

      Doug is “narrating”. Hence the narrator’s voice that sounds like Doug trying to not sound like Doug.

      The film credits state:

      Narration by
      Winston MacArthur

      Douglas Winston Phillips is named after Howard Phillips’ heroes Douglas MacArthur and Winston Churchill.

  13. MomT Says:

    I have also been wondering how many of these men (Swanson, Brown, Baucham, Botkin) are silent because they themselves or family members have done business with VF and may have had to sign a contract that would keep them from ever saying anything negative on pain of litigation…I am curious if these authors had to sign any contract of the sort to have VF publish or sell their books, videos, etc.

    • T.W. Eston Says:

      NDAs are SOP with Doug Phillips. If you entered into any sort of business relationship with Doug Phillips, Vision Forum, or any of its affiliates you were required to sign contracts that included either a separate NDA, or NDA language that was included within another contract.

      Doug Phillips’ NDAs have sometimes included non-disparagement language, meaning that if you ever say anything at all critical of Doug Phillips, no matter how true it is, you make yourself subject to legal sanctions. That was the case with Joe Taylor. The bar is set much lower with non-disparagement than it is for legal defamation. You can’t defame someone for speaking the truth, but you can, in theory, disparage some for speaking the truth about them.

      With his close confidants, such as the four you mentioned, it’s unlikely that Doug Phillips required any of them to sign an NDA. Assuming they aren’t under NDA, it speaks very poorly of their character – not that I already didn’t think very poorly of the integrity of Scott Brown, Kevin Swanson, and Geoff Botkin. The fact that none of them have barely spoken a word about Doug Phillips’ sex scandal is quite telling in itself. It’s especially troubling regarding Vaudie Baucham, a man who, as far as I can tell, is not cut from the same cloth as Phillips, Brown, Swanson, and Botkin.

      I truly hope that Baucham is under NDA, or that he has some other legal reason for why he he’s said so little regarding Doug Phillips, and what he’s said was only the bare minimum in response to questions put to him on his Facebook. Baucham isn’t alone though. There are a number of Christian leaders who have had business relationships with Doug Phillips, including book and video deals, speaking engagements, etc. Most of them haven’t said a single word publicly about Doug Phillips, and I’m quite confident that NDAs have nothing to do with their silence.

  14. Walking In The Light Says:

    I looked around for Raising The Allosaur. Found a copy at http://vimeo.com/83410717 I hope who ever shared it doesn’t mind. Maybe Phillips will have it taken down now that I’ve said this. I downloaded a copy of it just in case. I’m really glad I read this BEFORE I ever saw the movie. Nice having the other side of the story. Thanks!

    “It’s ironic but not surprising that Phillips selected a title that included the word “True”, for there is very little truth to it.” Amen to that! Phillips is such a phony.

    Speaking of irony Phillips now lives on, get this, Jurassic Lane in Spring Branch. That’s where he moved after he had to move out of the Vision Forum mansion. He’s not hurting any though. Really nice property in a really expensive neighborhood.

  15. Mongoose Says:

    I grew up in Florida and went on quite a few “expeditions” with the Derosa family. These were just field trips to the Peace or Alifia river where homeschool kids sifted through dirt in the river and found shark teeth, if you were lucky you might find a giant armadillo scoot. The Derosa boys walked around in their Indiana Jones hats telling eager kids what they had found, and most of the best stuff got kept in their museum (single wide trailer). Don’t get me wrong, it was lots of fun. Calling them expeditions is a gross over statement!

    I’m curious if current US rep. Mark Meadows had anything to do with the Allasaur property, I seem to recall him being involved with the Derosas in Montana? Maybe I am mis-remembering.

  16. wakingup Says:

    One might think that people like Geoff Botkin, Voddie Baucham and Kevin Swanson should go away and hide after all that has been revealed about their close associate, Doug Phillips. But instead of that they are scheduled to be keynote speakers at this year’s homeschool conference in Colorado. Kevin & the other CHEC board members (who are mostly elders at his church) renamed it the “conference on the family”. This might be a good time for homeschoolers in Colorado to let them know they’re not welcome. These men have taken the sweetness and freedom out of homeschooling for many, but that can change if they are not given a platform anymore.

    • Michael Says:

      We have been homeschooling for 25 years and have been to a total of 2 conferences, one in the beginning and one two years ago. The best way to let the powers that be know you want a change in the conferences is to JUST SAY NO. Vote with your pocketbook and call and let them know why you aren’t attending.

      • Reality Says:

        Exactly in agreement with Michael. I am so annoyed that I attended the Worldview conference 2007 in Asheville, NC where Doug Phillips was a keynote speaker. I did not know what a snake this guy was at the time but I am of the opinion that the organization should have known at that point. I stopped supporting EVERY ministry who has had him as a speaker and not acknowledged the damage he has done. I attended a spiritually abusive church as a teenager and have zero tolerance for Christian organizations that stand by and say nothing.

      • PioneerHomeschooler Says:

        Michael is right. Just staying away is not enough. You have to let them know why you refuse to be involved.

    • Sarah Says:

      @ Wakingup Voddie knew nothing of all this. Voddie was informed like many others that Doug was stepping down to spend time with his family. Voddie was in fact the first of the men who knew Doug to post publically about the scandal online. It was Voddies Facebook post where I first learned of the scandal. He had nothing glowing to say about Doug that day and was very gracious in directly answering anyones questions. You need to keep in mind Voddie, Kirk Cameron, the Kendrick’s, ect….. don’t have daily contact with Doug. These are very busy men. As long as Voddie and company maintain their distance from Doug I have no issues with them. The Botkins on the other hand, I think their beliefs speak for themselves. Two beautiful unmarried daughters in their 30s serving still solely serving their father. I have nothing nice to say about that 🙂

  17. Ann Says:

    I haven’t read all the responses, but I want to direct this comment to Sarah. I am speaking from my heart, not to make you change you opinion. Everyone comes from various positions and I want to state mine. I believe that Ken Hamm sets up a big false dichotomy. The idea is if you don’t believe in Creationism, you can not be a Christian. Period. I have met many young people raised as Christians that see life in terms of black and white. Either-or thinking. When they go to college and learn about science and old earth theories, it makes logical sense. Now these kids still hold onto this black and white thinking they learned at home and conclude everything they were taught about God is a lie. Hopefully, as they mature, they learn to embrace the mystery of God. There are many grey areas in life that as humans we have to accept. Science and religion talk about 2 different matters. You can accept old earth science and still worship God as creator. Genesis was written to a pre-literate, pre-scientific tribal culture. They believed the earth was the center of the universe. God reached down to their level of understanding to tell them, I am your creator, I am the only God, and I created you in love. Anyway, Jesus did not die on the cross over creationism. I believe Ken Hamm sets up an unimportant, irrelevant, and legalistic set of rules to divide believers. Again, I am not intending to try to change your opinion about Hamm, but there are Bible believing Christians who view Hamm as someone who is divisive and loves his power. Notice how he chose America as opposed to his homeland to build his museum. It is in part of the Bible Belt. He knew our southern, Bible based culture would be less likely to challenge him. And it is all about him. I am a proud southerner, but I don’t like it when leaders base their ministries on opposing science. I hope you receive this as I intended. Not a personal attack, but an exchange of ideas. Ann

    • raswhiting Says:

      Ken Ham has repeatedly stated that a person does not have to agree with him about six-day Creation and the Bible to be a Christian. Neither does he oppose science. Indeed, many scientists agree with Ken Ham, including for one Dr. Damadian, the inventor of the MRI system.

      Genesis was not written to a “pre-literate” culture – one does not write a book to people who can’t read!

      As Wade Burleson states, “…man is devolving, not evolving. Sure, technological advances occur at a greater rate than ever, but the nature of man is such that mankind is devolving intellectually and spiritually. Had the ancient Egyptians had our base of scientific knowledge, their stunningly engineered pyramids would have orbited the earth.”
      Source: http://www.wadeburleson.org/2014/02/bill-nye-and-devolution-of-man.html

    • oinkjonesjoetaylor Says:

      From someone thoroughly involved in every aspect of Creation vs evolution, fossil evidence etc. it is a big mistake to think that everything evolutionists say is truth and everything the Bible says is just religion. The Bible was inspired by God who could just as easily have told Moses the earth was millions of years old and we evolved from monkeys. But He didn’t. He said the truth. Those people were a lot smarter than we are and God didn’t have to tell them a bedtime story because they were tribal. And they were not pre-literate.

    • zooey111 Says:

      Ann, I agree with you!! Well said!!

  18. Ann Says:

    raswhiting, I disagree with your statement about Genesis. Even after the N.T. was put together, a large majority of the world was not literate. That is one reason God has displayed his majesty in nature (his creation). When the printing press was created, there was a bit more access, but Mass was in Latin. Most people, since creation, have understood God through nature, art, and oral tradition and of course the Holy Spirit. Literacy is a relatively new phenomenon, as is scientific inquiry. In antiquity, the world was explained chiefly though myth. This was the culture Genesis was written around. God can use anything he choses to woo people to Him. Also your quote about man devolving, evidence shows man is not devolving in the area of knowledge, though I do see signs of man devolving in the area of wisdom- two separate topics.
    I have not followed up on the details, but I do know Ken Hamm has recently been excluded from some of the homeschoolers’ conventions because of his intolerance toward his business competitors. I sometimes wonder if he is so intent on being right, that he disenfranchises the important call to Christ. I also believe that the Bible is the word of God, but more and more it is becoming an idol to many believers. We are called to worship God, not the Bible. I am so thankful that God and only God can judge our hearts and intentions. I think we will all be surprised when God reveals Himself totally to us. I think there will be many places where we were wrong. (I include myself). Until that time I cling to the verse that clams all this chatter is like clanging noise if there is no love. Thank you Jen for allowing my point of view. Ann

  19. nt12many Says:

    I wanted to comment about the dig itself (I have only watched the trailer). As the daughter of an archeologist who got his Ph.D. from Yale, I can say from experience that it is laughable to think that Doug and his cohorts could have “raised” anything in a week or less. It would take at months to cordon off the site and begin the careful and meticulous preparation to PREPARE to begin digging. Each tiny layer of earth has to be removed and recorded as the dig progresses. I’ve seen an archeological crew unearth a small ancient fire pit and it took six months.

    If those men did, indeed, do all that in that short of time, they were sloppy and unprofessional. I can’t believe they admitted to doing that! That’s like bragging about doing brain surgery in 15 minutes.

    Jill Farris

    • PioneerHomeschooler Says:

      Which, if true, would have been archaeological malpractice.

    • oinkjonesjoetaylor Says:

      Jill: your point is well-taken, however, after the site was surveyed, we took out the Allosaur in 4 ft sections, all very closely separated. This was done so we could prep the bones by half in the control of a lab, then we intended to mold the entire specimen as half-exposed, prep out all the bones and restore and mount them. It took the Mt. Blanco Team two full weeks to excavate it. The Team never got to do any of the prep or molding as all the bones went to Doug’s office.

      • Half Truths Abound Says:

        To be specific, the skull went to the “dungeon” down where the “store” was later on and then to what later became the break room. I wish I had known the truth back then Mr. Taylor. It was all so hush hush and mysterious and we were told lies about you.

        • Jen Says:

          HTA, do you think anyone owes Joe an apology?

        • Half Truths Abound Says:

          Of course.

        • oinkjonesjoetaylor Says:

          Doug’s film does not tell that his photo, of the Allosaur supposedly being UNloaded at VF’s “lab”, was actually loading it from the Mt. Blanco Museum in Crosbyton into the truck DeRosas rented to haul the bones to Doug. You can see the blue sleeve of my arm in the shot. That was one of the saddest days of my life. Losing the huge Lone Star mastodon skull was another very sad day.

      • Jen Says:

        Joe, thank you for filling in so many details here. I pray that God brings much healing to many hearts.

      • nt12many Says:

        Thank you for clarifying the procedure. I found the trailer to the movie ludicrous with all the running around, jumping down the mountain with the rope (!!), four-wheeling etc. I am sure in paleontology (just as in any scientific procedure), there are many careful hours of work both in the field and the lab. How incredibly frustrating to have had this amazing find stolen. I am praying for vindication for you.

        Jill

  20. Lovesthetruth Says:

    This whole “Fraudumentary” just makes me sick!! I home schooled my children, and I’m proud of our accomplishments. Everything we did was in truth and honesty, to the best of my ability! The transcripts I produced for their college entrance requirements were done with integrity. I just cannot imagine how the parents of the children that were involved in this fraudumentary feel? Just think how that affects their children’s psyche? This is heartbreaking and disgusting all at the same time. T.W. I am glad you did this article. Even though this happened quite awhile ago, it’s good information. I am learning that anytime I see a leader with even a little glimmer of dishonesty…be sure there’s more to come! I do agree that we need to be informed…not bitter…so we will remember the truth of who Doug Phillips is. It is also a warning to be so careful who we put our trust in.

  21. Sarah Says:

    @TW I just finished reading thru Raising the Truth, a very detailed timeline of the entire sage with the Forbes property. I am wondering if you have read it and if you consider it an accurate summary of the events?

    • Jen Says:

      Sarah, I was one of more than a dozen people or so, in 2007, who all worked diligently on gathering all the bits and pieces, all the facts and all the source documents and speaking to as many people involved in this as possible. After we had each done our homework, several of us got together for a week at a friend’s home and tried putting it all together. The number of emails and documents alone number in the several hundreds. It has been many years since I read the finished site, but as I recall, it was as accurate as possible at the time. Since then, a few new things have come to light and I believe more has taken place since then as well. But for the most part, that site is written from one person’s perspective.

      Please do not ask me to verify details from that site because all my documents are in storage right now. TW worked very hard on getting new interviews and new information for this article, so I would say that this is the most accurate one available now. Thanks!

    • Brandon G Says:

      It is the most detailed summary of the Allosaur debacle available. It has a lot of source documentation that you will not find anywhere, and I know because I helped build the site and provided assistance in writing articles.

  22. Jean Says:

    Mr. Easton and Jen, I know researching and writing these articles with such integrity does take an enormous amount of time. Saying that, I would really like to hear more of the story – the truthful story – which is what we get here at this site. Where are the bones now? Where is Mr. Taylor? Did anyone from the VF board attend the dig? Do you know the money trail? Who derived ‘income’ from these bones and where does the money trail end? VF or VFM? DeRosa’s? Etc.
    To the honorable men who confronted this lie – and as a result lost jobs, friends and church – I am deeply sorry. I am so angry that your brothers and sisters would be so blind, so unkind. Thank you for telling us the truth. Please encourage others who are eye witness’s to this travesty to come forward, even anonymously.

    • T.W. Eston Says:

      Jean, as I’ve said, “This story is such a tangled web of duplicity and legal chicanery that I have found it quite challenging to cover the subject matter adequately in just one article.” This story is such a mess that untangling it all would require a rather large book. For obvious reasons a blog doesn’t fit the bill.

      Pete DeRosa and his boys could answer your questions, but they refuse to do so.

      It would be nice if I could say that there had ever been a conclusion to this debacle but, alas, it’s not to be. I wasn’t going to mention this, but Sarah forced my hand by bringing up Ken Ham’s so-called “brilliance”: Ken Ham recently entered into a business ralationship with Pete DeRosa, and it centers around the Allosaurus that was donated to AiG. Ken Ham knows Pete DeRosa’s part in Raising The Allosaur. Yet Ken Ham has contracted with this huckster anyway. In my view that significantly takes away from the argument that Ken Ham could be a “brilliant man.”

      DeRosa, like Phillips, plays the part of the innocent victim, and like Doug Phillips he evades answering any questions publicly about the allosaur fraud. DeRosa privately claims that Phillips deceived him, and Phillips privately claims that DeRosa deceived him. I don’t trust or have any sympathy for either one of them. They’re both frauds, and they both knew exactly what they were doing when they conspired together to steal the credit for finding, excavating and raising the allosaur.

      I’ll ask Joe Taylor to answer your questions. However, Joe has to be far more careful than what I do about what he says because he’s under a non-disparagement clause as part of his settlement agreement. He’s already paid a very high price for speaking out.

      • Half Truths Abound Says:

        Right on…

      • Theretoo4 Says:

        From the very first meeting of Joe Taylor with the Forbes in May, 2001, Taylor had at least a one-third ownership in all the dinosaurs he would excavate on their property. After CSI agreed to fund the excavations, Taylor agreed to one-third. By April of of 2004, Taylor owned 100% of the Allosaur. He also had three buyers, one for $500,000 when restored and mounted by Taylor. With funding from a foundation, DeRosas paid Taylor $124,840 for the Allosaur. Taylor felt he had no choice but to accept. But due to huge legal bills and costs to try and save his investment in the Allosaur and museum, this left Taylor $90,000 in debt. He closed his museum twice as a result. Representative Mark Meadows, who was part of Doug’s group and appeared in Raising The Allosaur, bought the Forbes property and gave Pete DeRosa a ten year lease on it and the bones. Dana Forbes has the details.

        • Dana Forbes Says:

          Both Joe and my family ran up large legal bills as well as many hours trying to get the whole thing settled. While there was ultimately a settlement as stated, much was eaten up by those bills. Within two years after the property was out of our hands, the DeRosas and VF were no longer involved with any further activity on the property, and it has stayed untouched for the last ten years.

      • Sarah Says:

        @TW theretoo4 states below that Micheal Peroutka funded the DeRosa’s up til 2013 and then he gave the bones to Ken Ham/AIG. You stated up above that Ken Ham recently entered into a business relationship with Pete DeRosa. Ken Ham’s press release also states the Allasourus was donated by the Peroutka Foundation. Just wondering if you can clarify that. Thanks

      • Freeindeed Says:

        ” In my view that significantly takes away from the argument that Ken Ham could be a ‘brilliant man.'”

        Being brilliant and having integrity are not synonymous. Just saying.

        • Michael Says:

          Freeindeed, Sarah, etal…I think this is a good point. Very few will fault Ham ‘ stand on the authority of the Bible. Very few would deny that he is a great teacher, evangelist, etc. Very few would even deny that AIG has been blessed by God as an organization. With all that said, we shouldn’t “kill the messenger” when something one of our “heroes” does is against biblical ethics, and is exposed as such. Unfortunately, with parachurch ministries, and their proliferation, there is no other way to hold people accountable for their actions. They answer to nobody in any ecclesiastical organization. Therefore, how are we to know the truth unless there are folks who will take the risk of exposing it? Scripture says, “The TRUTH will make you FREE,” but it doesn’t guarantee that the truth will make you HAPPY.

    • Theretoo4 Says:

      The Allosaur bones are now at Ken Ham’s Creation Museum. Joe Taylor is still at his museum The Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum at 124 West Main, Crosbyton, TX 79322. Anyone is welcome. Bob Renaud attended the dig; not sure if VF board members did. Doug made a lot of money from his film. He and the DeRosas took several paying groups to the site. Michael Peroutka supported the DeRosas while they worked on the bones at their place in FL. from 2004 till 2013. Peroutka has now given the bones to Ken Ham.

  23. T.W. Eston Says:

    If I receive any other supporting documents I’ll add them to the Additional Supporting Documents and References section at the end of the article and post a comment about it. Dana Forbes, for example, has a number of other documents that he’d like to make available for posting here. However, given how many years ago these events took place it may be difficult for him to locate them at this point.

    One such document I’ve just added is Dana Forbes responds to email about Raising The Allosaur. Dana Forbes shared this email with Joe Taylor and Joe posted it on the Mt. Blanco web site. However, due to legal constraints Joe was later required to remove it. I have no such constraints and am happy to share it here.

  24. Brandon G Says:

    Thanks TW for writing about this important subject. As you stated, there is so much more that can be said but I want to leave the readers something I noticed years ago while watching RTA. After watching it for the second or third time it gets real easy picking apart the gross inconsistencies. Near the end, where they “find” the neck vertebrae, why are they digging a hole and needing to pray to God when the area they are digging is marked on all 4 corners by orange flags? Doug, the man who takes pictures of everything, for whatever reason doesn’t take a picture of this incredible find nor is there any video footage of the supposed neck vertebrae? Also after “finding” the vertebrae they seem to not be too excited, just sitting around talking. Why in the footage right before the “find”, do we see another person in the background (Hint the person is Mark Meadows, but where did he come from? I believe they needed filler footage to transition to the “find” so they just grabbed some footage they had of Bruce Bellamy digging and Mark Meadows just happens to be in the background. If you notice he is not in the following footage where you only see DP, MD and BB)?

    Link to images

  25. T.W. Eston Says:

    Brandon, for me personally there is no staged event in Raising The Allosaur that is as morally offensive as the “skull prayer”. Most Christians think of “taking the Lord’s name in vain” as cursing. It can be that, but a much worse form of taking the Lord’s name in vain is to invoke His name for show, like the Pharisees did with their loud prayers in the temple. “But all their works they do to be seen by men” (Matt. 23:5). That is precisely what Doug Philips does in this staged prayer before the video camera:

    “Within moments of breaking dirt a remarkable discovery is made. Dr. Bellamy has struck the neck vertebrae leading right up to the skull. They found their allosaur.”

    This is worse than just being scientifically ludicrous. It’s also blasphemous. They pray and moments later (we are led to believe) God answers their prayers that they find the Allosaurus skull. Name it and claim it!

    Doug Phillips’ understanding of paleontology appears to have been heavily influenced by the kiddy song, “The neck bone’s connected to the head bone.” Anyone who knows even the basics of paleontology knows that just because you find a neck vertebrae it doesn’t mean you’ve found the skull. There are many reasons why you may never find the skull at all.

    How exactly did Doug Phillips get to be “an adjunct professor of apologetics with the Institute for Creation Research”? You would think such a position with such an organization would require considerably more knowledge of apologetics, creationism and science than Doug Phillips possesses.

    • Half Truths Abound Says:

      Pretty sure that was just an honorary title given to him by the Morris guys who probably thought of him as a good friend and articulate apologetics speaker, he is featured in various episodes of the ICR program Science, Scripture, and Salvation… Which I think still plays on the BBN (Bible Broadcasting Network) radio network. Titles sound good and make people think more highly of the person they are listening to.

  26. Observer Says:

    TW and Jen: I feel like I have read enough…. Sense of overload. However, I would like it if you could address how to stop these kinds of people as you see them going in almost the same trajectory that Doug Phillips followed. To watch it is excruciating; it is virtually impossible to say something without looking mean-spirited. I feel there is no remedy other than what you have already followed: to end up picking up the pieces after the damage is done. But lives will be ruined, children have been given impossible burdens they cannot keep, parents will be in despair.

    • T.W. Eston Says:

      Observer, believe me I quite understand. Just imagine how overloaded I feel. Even still, what I have exposed here just since Doug Phillips’ sex scandal went public late last year is only the tip of the iceberg. The magnitude of Doug Phillips’ duplicity and corruptions boggles my mind.

      Raising The Allosaur has been a very challenging story to cover, not only in terms of the volume of information that I’ve had to research, but also telling the story in a concise and systematic way.

      There are even more challenging stories than this one that very much need to be told. I’m not at liberty to disclose the nature of those various challenges. However I can say that there are many people who need to step forward and start sharing what they know, but they still live in fear of Doug Phillips and his henchmen. They live in fear that Doug Phillips will make a comeback in a year or two, regain his power and influence, and then pay everyone back for exposing him. Yet it is their own silence right now that is the very thing that will enable Doug Phillips to make that comeback.

      I would ask for everyone’s prayers that “Everything is uncovered and laid bare”.

      • OtOLi Says:

        I think Observer’s question (which many others have as well) is more broad than just Doug Phillips. Yes, he needs to be thoroughly discredited and prevented from doing this again. But what about all the others that are like him? This kind of negative exposure is helpful in some ways, but what would be even better is if these situations never got to this point in the first place. How can we protect ourselves from sociopaths in general? How can we warn the church and the broader culture?

        • PioneerHomeschooler Says:

          Sadly, we’ve had all we need to know to protect ourselves since Peter wrote his epistles, and still we don’t listen. Not sure there’s any new strategy that will accomplish this if we won’t even heed the inspired words of a disciple of Jesus.

        • Observer Says:

          Yes, my question is broader. The new media (which Doug Phillips used) was instrumental in both catapulting Doug and into exposing the problems. But I note sadly that nobody listened to Jen in the beginning. So one always has to wait for a “Cassandra” so the rest of problems can be exposed?

        • OtOLi Says:

          As PioneerHomeschooler says, heeding the Word of God will help protect us. I think real relationships with people we actually know are important as well. Anyone can present themselves in a certain way on the Internet, at conferences, etc. but what are they really like? The whole fascination with celebrities and leaders is a big problem. Christ said that the greatest would be servant of all. It’s a safe bet that anyone who says they have it all figured out…doesn’t.

      • oinkjonesjoetaylor Says:

        Just for the record, I am not afraid of Doug Phillips, Pete DeRosa, Ken Ham or any of their lawyers. Joe Taylor

      • MomT Says:

        TW – why are you not at liberty to share?

        • T.W. Eston Says:

          Because of ongoing investigations I’m doing.

        • MomT Says:

          I’ve said it before and I will say it again – thank you for all the hard work you and Jen are doing in investigating. I believe many are being set free from the bondage of idol worship to this man and his vision.

  27. Theretoo4 Says:

    One might ask Attorney Peroutka if he bought the Allosaur for Pete, or did he buy it from him and give it to AiG, but as AiG’s announcement said, the Allosaur was a gift from the Peroutka’s.

  28. T.W. Eston Says:

    There’s a very disturbing article on another blog about Doug Phillips’ younger brother, Brad Phillips. I think it’s even more disturbing than my own one here because, according to the blogger, Brad Phillips, because of his own film fraud, is directly responsible for the deaths of many Christians in Sudan.

    Film Fraud: A Phillips Family Tradition?

    • Theretoo4 Says:

      TW, Sources close to the subject said this: Howard Phillips urged Pat Matriciana of Jeremiah Films to take Brad on the film crew with him to do a documentary of the persecution of Christians in Sudan. Pat made the documentary and was editing it back in California. Brad wanted to be a part of it. Pat allowed him. Pat made a copy of the film to be sent to the missionary in Sudan so he could tell which people to blur out or edit out so their lives would not be jeopardized if the Muslims saw the film.

      Brad stole a master copy, did a cover and took it to D. James Kennedy without Pat knowing it and got Kennedy to distributed it. When Pat came to Kennedy to get him to sell his new film, Kennedy told him he already had it. Pat said he couldn’t, because it had not been released. Kennedy said he got it from Brad Phillips. There was some sort of legal battle and Brad got away with what he did, but because the film was released before the missionary could say who to blur or edit out, 300 Christians were murdered by the Muslims after they saw the film.

      • Interested Says:

        Unfortunately, Brad Phillips is idolized by the older Doug Phillips’ children and Brad’s divorced wife is demonized.

  29. Michelle Says:

    I am sure that this is going to fall on deaf ears but maybe you should stop and take a hard look at the structure that all of you seem to be trying to operate under. Maybe the whole religion is the problem, and as long as you continue to participate in it you will continue to be controlled and victimized. I can tell you as an outside observer the only consistent theme I can see in your religion is oppression, fraud, and control. Your religion is so inconsistent and has so many different interpretations that it is amazing to me that anyone could ever refer to their version of their idea of god as described by their interpretation of their version of Christianity as the “Truth.” Your religion has entire movements based around specific interpretations of passages of a translated and interpreted book (FIC, Quiverfull, Progressive Christianity movement, and so on…)! And it is this pursuit of “Truth” in a nebulous sea of interpretations leaves you open to victimization, in my opinion. Accept that you don’t know, and that no one can know, and you will never fall victim to someone who says that they know. I understand that this is a generalization, and that not all leaders involved in religion are predators but when you are talking about issues like organized religion you have to play the odds. It seems to me that the structure of Christianity from its inception, and all religions for that matter, are custom built to allow for a small group of power-hungry men to have free reign on vulnerable people. It’s just a thought… but it seems to me that the roots of this tree are rotten, so even if you find the best branch to sit on, that tree is still coming down.

    • Jen Says:

      Michelle, who are you speaking to?

      • Michelle Says:

        Jen, sorry I probably didn’t post in the right spot, but I was responding to Observer’s question about how to prevent this from happening again. From my perspective, it would seem the best way to prevent this from happening again is to stop participating in an organization that is structured in away that makes abuse almost inevitable.

        • Jen Says:

          Michelle, I agree. 🙂

        • Observer Says:

          Michelle: Can you elaborate? I am from the outside. Had no knowledge of the inner workings. How could one have known?

        • MomT Says:

          Jen – can you elaborate? Are you saying that one should not participate in any organized religion? i.e. Christianity? Michelle – are you saying that one should not participate in a group that has the potential to victimize based on it’s structure? That would negate every group – even non-religious ones. i.e. The government, the school system, a company, a homeschool group, even family. Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life. The problem is not Christ or His Word. The problem is sin. Christians are duped because they forget about the depravity of man – even christians who claim to be “reformed” and should know better. There is absolute truth based on God’s word, but from the beginning Satan has been busy twisting that truth. We know his tactic is to speak enough truth to sound right, but to twist a part of it to make it dangerous and place people in bondage. We have been told how to protect ourselves – put on the full armor of God. Ephesians 6:10-18 :
          10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 12 For our struggle is not against [a]flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. 14 Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 [b]in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

          18 [c]With all prayer and petition [d]pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, [e]be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints,

        • Jen Says:

          MomT, I am simply saying that anytime you put yourself under someone else’s authority, you are giving up your God-given rights to be “you.” Jesus came to set us free from the concept that one person has authority over another person. When we willingly put ourselves under another’s authority, we must realize that we are making ourselves “slaves” to that person. I would rather be free.

          Which is a stronger bond — a piece of paper, like a church covenant, or LOVE? Which one will last longer and bear more fruit? If people simply came together to worship the Lord because they loved God and loved one another, there would be no need for coercion and control. I would much rather meet together with a group of people because I simply LOVE being with them, than feeling like I “have” to do this or that to “belong” to the group.

          Love always wins.

        • OtOLi Says:

          Jen, I understand where you’re coming from, but there are godly, biblical authority structures. Would you say that parents have no authority over their children? Do employers not have authority over their employees? There are limits to that authority, but it is real authority. And yes, employees are “enslaved”, but they are free to quit if they want to (in normal employment situations, obviously some people are quite literally enslaved and forced to work against their will, which is a whole different scenario). Even independent contractors are “enslaved” to their contracts. There is no escaping authority. The real issue is whose authority are you under? Didn’t Jesus Christ submit to His Father’s authority?

          Again, I get where you’re coming from, and agree that churches should be based on love instead of control. True leaders are those who serve and humble themselves, not those who rule proudly.

        • Jen Says:

          OtOLi, parents are to love and train their children, and to nurture them and bring them up in the ways of the Lord. An authoritarian parent will never have their child’s heart. It’s just looking at it from a different perspective — that of using love rather than authority.

          I see that you already understand the workplace “slavery.”

          We love because God loves us. We respond to His love. We don’t control because God loves us. Authority that is controlling is not biblical. Servant leadership is not authoritative.

        • OtOLi Says:

          Jen, I think we’re mostly on the same page here…maybe talking past each other a little bit. There is a difference between “authority” and “authoritarian.” A parent has legitimate authority/control over their own children that other adults don’t. That doesn’t mean they should be authoritarian/controlling. Love recognizes these distinctions in relationships. Love of children involves discipline (see Heb. 12:6). I don’t love/discipline other children in the same way that I love/discipline my own.

          Indeed, many people are enslaved to their employer/mortgage/etc.

          I didn’t specifically mention quote them last time, but I was thinking of these verses:
          10″Do not be called leaders; for One is your Leader, that is, Christ.
          11″But the greatest among you shall be your servant.
          12″Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled; and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted.
          Matthew 23:10-12

    • Molly Says:

      “Religion” is man-made rules and traditions. Religion is not the answer. A relationship with Christ is. That is the only way for truth to be found.

    • OtOLi Says:

      Michelle wrote:
      “oppression, fraud, and control”

      Yes, this is true of many Christians groups (sadly). It is also true of many Muslim, Jewish, pagan, etc. groups. It is most definitely true of public schools and civil government. And don’t forget many families as well. (I am just now seeing that MomT has already made a similar comment.) My point is that oppression, fraud, and control have nothing to do specifically with Christianity or even “religion” in general. They are the result of human nature–sin–regardless of whether one claims to be “religious” or not.

      “Accept that you don’t know, and that no one can know, and you will never fall victim to someone who says that they know.”

      But there is such a thing as “Truth” (otherwise, you have no basis on which to say oppression, fraud, and control are bad). I agree that you shouldn’t follow anyone who claims to have all the answers, except for the One who is the Truth, Jesus. All these problems would fall away if we would simply follow Him.

      • Michelle Says:

        Mom T asked: Michelle – are you saying that one should not participate in a group that has the potential to victimize based on it’s structure? I am saying that you should not participate in an organization specifically designed to control and victimize people. While there are no ideal organizations, some are designed with checks and balances (democratic governments) and some are designed to give a few men control and authority over people, and offer very few protections to those victims (most religions and religious organizations, christianity included). It’s very easy to control people when you say, “god says so… and if you disobey me and god, you will be cast into hell.”
        OtoLI, you definitely can experience things as being hurtful and bad, and observe and experience suffering and want to rid the world of them without “Truth.” Even infants have a sense of justice. When you look for all of the answers in old translated books you are going to run into a lot of people claiming to have moral authority, and the “right interpretation” of the “right book.” The people who claim to have the answers are the dangerous ones. But as I see it, these predatory leaders are unavoidable because the entire concept of god comes from a book written and translated a long time ago, and everyone will read different translated versions and have different ideas of what it means, and everyone is going to go looking for people who can explain it, and that is where Doug Phillips and company come in. There are obviously many organizations that fraud and abuse happen in, but if you participate in religion you make yourself an easy target.

        I am not trying to cause controversy, but it seems like a lot of people here have been very sheltered from other points of view and ways of seeing and experiencing the universe, so I thought I would talk about the way an outsider sees this.

        I agree with Jen, if the focus is always on love, it seems like this kind of systemic abuse wouldn’t happen.

        • OtOLi Says:

          Michelle wrote:
          “you should not participate in an organization specifically designed to control and victimize people.”

          And then you go on to praise democratic governments–how ironic!

          “you definitely can experience things as being hurtful and bad, and observe and experience suffering and want to rid the world of them without “Truth.””

          Is that true? If there isn’t such a thing as truth, then there can’t be any such things as “bad” or “suffering.”

          “Even infants have a sense of justice.”

          Is that true? I agree that it is, but again you’re contradicting yourself. Apart from truth, there can be no justice.

          I get what you’re saying about religious leaders and fraud and abuse. That is a real issue, but the exact same things are true of non-religious leaders. The issue isn’t religion/non-religion, but sin and what to do about it.

          I don’t get why you’re even commenting if you don’t believe in truth. Obviously you believe that there is such a thing as truth since you’re trying to convince people to look at things a different way. If there’s no truth, it doesn’t matter at all how we look at things. Maybe you should re-look at what you believe, since there are some obvious contradictions.

  30. Jean Says:

    Mr. Easton and Jen, would Eric or Nicholas Kjeldgaard be willing to speak truth. They were at the dig and were eye witness’s. The claim made is that they were eye witness’s to the skull discovery, which we know is not possible since they were with VF group? Just a thought.

  31. Boxelder Says:

    T.W.: (Not sure I’m commenting in the right place…) Finally got a chance to wade through this. Thanks for the hard work. I’m trying to take your article and put it into a time line for my own use. If I ever get it finished and checked (not a guarantee…some of us work for a living…) I’ll send it to you.

    We weren’t really Doug bashers before this, and like many others, we benefited from many aspects of the VF ministry and met many wonder families at various events, some of whom remain dear friends.

    We were at the NCFIC conference in Oct/Nov ’13 when news broke. We’re not ‘insiders,’ by any stretch, but we have been involved enough to have been hurt by this.

    I had quite a bit of grey hair when I first heard the expression “Five Solas,” from the lips of Mr. Phillips, and (short version…) that turned our little world upside down, for the good. It also ignited a feeling of betrayal by the mainstream evangelical American church and all of its nonsense. So, while I am thoroughly and irrevocably disgusted by the events preceding (e.g. Allosaur) and finalizing (e.g. ‘inappropriate’ relationship) the demise of VFM, I have appreciated having had my eyes opened to the mostly insipid nature of the American church. I never thought that at my age, I would be studying the Bible as much as I have been for the last few years, and even memorizing entire books. I never thought my family would be as content and as well grounded as it is. (Not Kool-aid drinking contentment…but alive, thinking, worshipping contentment.) So it is a little odd for me to still have a feeling of gratitude for someone whom I now must conclude is ‘warped…sinful…self-condemned.’ There’s no amount of lipstick that you can put on this pig (the real side of Doug) that will undo all of the mess. But how odd to still harbor fairly strong positive sentiments.

    The amount of anger I have seen expressed on Jen’s site over the last few months is understandable, and I don’t want to jump on the no-gossip wagon. I have wrestled with how to say this, and, candidly, I struggle.

    Here’s a shot at it: There is a lot of good that has come out of VFM and NCFIC and Mr. Swanson’s ministry. Many families have been ‘rescued’ from implosion because their churches were not equipped to help them. We fit into that category. I cannot believe that my family’s experience is that unique. And we’re not dummies. I have a real smart-guy job. My wife and I have produced adult children who have smart-people jobs. I regularly ask my ~20 yr old daughter, jokingly, “do you feel oppressed?” (She has yet to figure out that she could get a lot out of me if she said yes.)

    My plea is this: Be peace makers. Temper the strong feelings and harsh words (not you or Jen, but the commenters) expressed in this blog against the movement, or maybe, concept, that says, “Dad, for the last several decades, you haven’t been doing your job. You need to fulfill you Biblical obligations toward you family.”

    I’m not suggesting you naively play nice with Doug and even other leaders*. But there are a lot of inappropriate expressions of feelings and fantastically bad demonstrations of really wrong biblical thinking going on in the comments, and it’s just wrong. None of us would ever tolerate these kinds of things expressed in our churches. Yes, I know it’s a blog, not a church, but, well…’nuf said.

    My (our) thanks are real. Jen, we’re real sorry for what you went through at BCA. Kindest regards…

    Boxelder…

    *A comments on “other leaders.” Despite Scott Brown’s (and Dohm’s) apparently less than stellar departure from Trinity, here’s a big difference between him and Mr. P. Scott ALWAYS has a Bible in front of him when he speaks, and he spends that vast majority of his speaking time expositing scripture. (I don’t think I’ve ever seen DP do simple exposition.) Disagree with him (Scott) on doctrine…that’s fine. Chastise him for doing or saying dumb things. I’d be willing to admit I’m wrong, but I don’t think we’re dealing with the same pathologies as with Mr. P.

    • Carol Says:

      Boxelder — I appreciate your comments.

    • T.W. Eston Says:

      “My plea is this: Be peace makers. Temper the strong feelings and harsh words…” From my own perspective, knowing some of the families that Doug Phillips has destroyed, including the faith of many children, I’d have to say that things are already quite well tempered here. Much, much worse could be said of Doug Phillips than has been said.

      This isn’t to take away from the experiences of those families who have actually benefited from Vision Forum. There are such families. Many families are said to have benefited from the teachings of the charismatic and dynamic Jim Jones too.

      “Despite Scott Brown’s (and Dohm’s) apparently less than stellar departure from Trinity, here’s a big difference between him and Mr. P. Scott ALWAYS has a Bible in front of him when he speaks, and he spends that vast majority of his speaking time expositing scripture.” I couldn’t disagree more strongly. Having a Bible in front of him is hardly any indication that he knows how to honestly exposit it. Scott Brown is no expositor of sacred Scripture. He is a wolf in sheep’s clothing that perverts God’s Word for his own agenda. I’ve already given one such example of that. If you haven’t already read that article, I’d encourage you to do so. Perhaps it will change your views about Scott Brown. As I’ve said in that article:

      “Scott Brown’s method of expositing Scripture is little different from throwing a big pot of spaghetti and meatballs at the wall and hoping something will stick. His exegetical skills really are that much of a mess. He twists and contorts Scripture, as well as the definitions of the terms used therein, while conflating one term for another, all to arrive at a predetermined outcome.”

    • Jen Says:

      Boxelder, thanks for your insightful comment. I totally understand the tension you are experiencing between giving Doug Phillips credit where credit is due, and being righteously angry about the more-than-obvious hypocrisy in his life.

      I like to observe people in order to look for patterns, as a hobby. In the nine years since my excommunication, I have repeatedly told many people, when the subject came up, that Doug Phillips was right about one thing: a father’s role is far more important in the life of child (especially after age 12) than most men realize. And while Doug Phillips emphasized dads being dads, he still missed the main component of that relationship: love. It was always a performance-based mentality, rather than simply love-based.

      Were there other things that Doug got right? Certainly, or he would never have had the following that he did! But when we really look at only the messages he taught (which we have not gotten to yet), we find that they are all out of balance. There is no Jesus. There is no love. There is no grace. There is no gospel. It is all performance, law-based teaching. And so when you take the good parts of his messages and you mix it with families who already understand love, it works! But when you take his messages and mix it with families who don’t understand love, it doesn’t work. In fact, it is absolutely devastating, producing control and oppression and broken families.

      I could tell you (but I won’t in order to protect their privacy) of dozens of families that I know of that were devastated by Doug Phillips’ teachings. I’m sure there are far more that I don’t know of. It sounds to me like you already had a desire to love your family, and Doug put feet to that desire. In many cases, the wife/mom has the desire to do something different, so she drags the dad/husband to these conferences or buys Vision Forum materials, and tries to get Hubby to participate. If Hubby doesn’t already have a strong desire to love and spend time with his family, these teachings can end up harming a family even more. And they do.

      I wish Doug Phillips would have brought his message about the family in conjunction with Jesus, love, grace, and the gospel. Then he would have had something worth sharing. And if he had lived his message in conjunction with Jesus, love, grace, and the gospel, then I would probably be singing his praises today.

      As for the “Five Solas,” you can hear them in many churches. I am glad that you gave Doug credit for getting you interested in studying the Bible again, but please do not use his very faulty hermeneutics in doing so (we haven’t got to that yet either).

      As for your plea for commenters here to be peacemakers, that is possible for those who have been truly hurt only after they go through the five stages of grief: denial and isolation, anger, bargaining, depression, and finally, acceptance. It is important to allow each person to go through these five natural steps of grieving at their own pace, and we will see a lot of that come out on the blog. My only request is that it is done so respectfully, as much as possible. But to eventually become peacemakers is a great goal for each person! If churches are not tolerating these five stages of grief, then it is no wonder that they do not find healing there, and I would say that it is more common than not in today’s church to just tell someone you will pray for them, but not really be there to listen to them as they go through this necessary process. This blog is here for those who are going through all that right now.

      So, do fathers need to LOVE their children? Absolutely! Thanks for all your thoughts here.

    • Dom Walk Says:

      “I had quite a bit of grey hair when I first heard the expression “Five Solas,” from the lips of Mr. Phillips, and (short version…) that turned our little world upside down, for the good.”

      The Five Solas are not of Doug Phillips. They are core reformation theology. Doug Phillips and his fellow travelers, some of whom you mention, put on enough orthodox sheepskin to cover their wolf fur, at least for a season. The truth always will out.

      May I suggest that your view of Phillips and the like should be the same as if you were saved by Arians or another cult. Time to recognize that you got good crumbs from a rotten stew, thank God for his mercy, and distance yourself from the false prophet, rather than attempt to defend him.

  32. Michael Says:

    Boxelder, I agree with you that some good has come out of some of the preaching of these guys regarding family, etc., but I can’t get over the feeling that “what goes around comes around,” in other words, you reap what you sow. From what I have read, written by first hand witnesses, both Phillips and Brown/Dohm started their respective churches under deception and in unethical ways. Brown’s story, specifically, is revealing to me of his character. First, he changes his position on Phillips’ statement in a video from that of his church leadership in midstream, divides and destroys the church over it, and starts his own church. Then we find out he took money, substantial amount s of money, from Phillips for two years, and we learn he didn’t bother to tell his colleagues at Trinity about what certainly looks like a conflict of interest in the situation. Then he has the NCFIC organization bequeathed to him by Phillips after he has destroyed one church to start another. The testimony of Mr Albright, his brother-in-law as to how he treated his wife’s family, is especially revealing of his character. As far as I can tell, the NCFIC has been built on a foundation of deception and schism, and when your foundation has that kind of cracks, don’t be too surprised when your building crumbles into dust. Regarding Brown’s exposition of scripture, I am reminded of the verse (Hebrews 13:7) that tells the church to remember the men that have spoken the word of God…CONSIDERING THE END OF THEIR CONVERSATION (way of life). Considering Mr Brown’s apparent modus operendi, I wouldn’t walk across the street to hear him preach now, much less travel across the country to pay exorbitant money to go to a conference. The sin that finally brings Phillips down, sexual abuse and adultery, is only a symptom, that reveals his true character to the Christian world at large. It is “bigger” in our eyes because of the unbelievably hypocritical nature of it, however lies are lies, and deception is deception, which is the foundational problem with both Phillips and Brown. We, as christians, unlike the public in the Clinton sex scandal, should have enough discernment to focus on the real problem, not to be pulled by the powers that be into focusing on the tawdry details of the sexual aspect of the Phillips scandal, to the exclusion of focusing on the seriousness of what is at the root of this whole situation.

    • Jen Says:

      In addition to what Michael has laid out about Scott Brown, I would say that while I am very glad to hear that Scott regularly exposits from Scripture, I have heard that his hermeneutics are just as bad as Doug’s. Teaching false concepts from the Bible is not very high praise indeed. I, personally, would not recommend his teachings based solely on that.

      We are working on an article that will show that the NCFIC was also built upon a very faulty foundation, which is just one in a long line of such deceptions within Vision Forum. Stay tuned!

  33. Not Fooled Anymore Says:

    Thank you Michaiel again! I agree with everything you said in response to Boxelder and then Carol agreed with. .

    As I have state before, as one of the families who left BCA , I will state we are very saddened by the fact that these men who are carrying on this message have not only side stepped around Doug’s sin, but have refused to acknowledge he destroyed many in his path to keep this major sin quiet. That hurts and has greatly hurt the young people especially who witnessed this hypocrisy. There has been no love nor acknowledgement of this treatment of many of the former BCA families from these other men who have labored alongside Doug for years and are now carrying on the torch. While I agree God has exposed so much, we are still very alarmed at all his old cohorts carrying on and forging ahead as if none of this happened. Michael, I agree much has been exposed, but not enough and not enough to stop the message they are still continuing with this year. I realize God will work in HIs timing and in the meantime will continue to speak out along with others on this blog in hopes that it will spare just one more from falling victim to these fallacies.

    We have had many of these folks across the nation in our home and I do not speak of that which I have only heard said or only have second hand knowledge of. Let me see who has sat at my dinner table and visited my home many times: Doug Phillips, many BCA families and employees of VF, many interns, Scott Brown, Peter and Kelly Bradrick, The Botkin Family, some of the Roaches, Barnes, Neil Craig Family,the Strackbeins, some of the Bradrick family, and many more. Likewise, we have been guests in almost all of the above mentioned folks homes and more. Yet since we left and were put under discipline, we have never heard from any of them and we feel judged by them all as if we were the wrong ones because we were put under discipline for speaking out against all we witnessed first hand. Now in light of what Doug was hiding all these years, and we feel many of them must have known something, I would have thought even one family across this nation would have reached out and stated they were sorry and acknowledge all of this. To my knowledge no one has had this happen to them. It is business as usual and new ones are being formed.

    Yes, it is silent in regards to the sins. They are hosting conferences. Going on without the great DP, to carry on this message that sadly lacks the love of Christ. It is very legalistic. Boxelder, Doug also often, if not always, had his Bible there in front of him, and unfortunately it does not mean that the way they are using scripture, it was not being twisted to meet the message they are trying to put out. I sadly feel it is all about money: making it and keeping it coming in. They are used to this level of income and have built their mini empires on this income. Some, Like Landmark Events,are starting new ventures to capitalize on a new opportunity and now vacated market by Doug to be the new ones to profit. Did any one else get their email yesterday to sign up for their upcoming conferences and tours? We removed ourselves from all VF lists years back, then almost all others that have to do with these ministries, so we are wondering just where did Kevin Turley and crew get our email address as we did not give it to them!

    I say this because one thing we have learned being on the outside is this. We had become legalisti in many areas of our thinking. This movement he started and these others are carrying on, lean towards this. One area is in the area of dress. We have repented and God has shown us we are no better than the girl that wears pants and in some ways she and her family may have done far more for the Kingdom of Christ than the skirt wearing crowd. Now before some of you who are still only wearing skirts start yelling and screaming, I am not condemning you. I am just saying it does not make you holier or better and to make sure your motives are pure. There are lots of great ministries out there beyond this circle and you can grow in Christ, home school your children and teach them how to maneuver this ungodly world. It has been and is being done by many more than in this FIC circle. We realize we had become hidden, unloving and too sheltered and secluded to do any good as Christians.We were only socializing in this circle and it was not healthy.

    There has to be a give and take and not an us against them as there has been in the past 15 years or so years. This has caused much division and destruction in the church as a result. Yes, there are things that need to be corrected in today’s church, but dividing churches and then starting new ones, where if a young girl comes with her family, in God forbid, pants, she is shunned and in turn feels unwelcome and does not feel the genuine love of Christ is wrong. Yes, this does and did happen too many times at BCA and and other FiC’s we have heard of and it hurt people. It was and is wrong. No one knows that young ladies heart nor what she may be doing for the Lord. For all many of us knew she could have put us all to shame, yet the legalism ruled out and she was crushed. This is not how Jesus operated. Why have and did so many in this FIC community do this? I am reminded of the story,'”The Witch of Blackbird Pond” where cultures and religion clash. I recently read a comment by Bethany Hamilton’s mother in which she said people have condemned her daughter for what she does and wears yet have they really listened to her story, heart and message for the Lord? Sadly all they see are the clothes which are a reflection of the culture in which she comes from. God puts us all in different places, stations, countries and cultures. Unless we have walked a mile in someone else’s shoes we need to close our mouths and listen. Ask sincerely why and hear what someone has to say, They may completely shock you and bless you beyond your wildest imagination.

    We currently are taking classes in a home school co-op. We are using Apologia for science. The teacher has used some VF material to supplement the course which has made us uncomfortable, yet we had to separate our “feelings” from the fact that this was something scientifically accurate, she did not just go out and purchase it for the class, it was a supplement, and did not detract from my child’s learning the truth in this subject. My selfish ways want to say I want nothing to do with DP, VF and all, but realize they were out there for a long time in the home school world and I may not be able, as this has shown me, to completely avoid all things. Since it was science and correct we let it slide. Now if it had been teachings on marriage, family, girls and college, the Bible itself, courtship and what’s a girl or boy to do, I would have spoken to the teacher and put a stop to it immediately. Now my student was not happy about it,since this student was very hurt from the years of hypocrisy we were subjected to at BCA , but we had to remind them that what was spoken and used on the CD was accurate and was not what we had the problem with and thus we would not cause a problem. Do I like it? No,but it just is not a subject that was that terribly important to cause a stink over it in the class. We are learning to survive in the greatly influenced, post DP home schooling world and some days it is not easy and brings up hurts even for our children in what we think is a safe place. We are having to teach them grace, love and to look at the heart. This is what we did not hear taught from Doug and these men. Their message teaches division and leads to legalism for so many. This is where we feel the major error is and thus leads to the sins of pride, greed and deceit.

    This whole movement and the way these folks have portrayed home schooling is that if you do this you will get this picture perfect family. Not so. Many of our children, no matter how hard we try will never fit the mold. Some have children who God gave different dreams to. Some of us have boys who want to pursue military pursuits ( of which many of these men, including Doug looked down upon) doctors and engineering degrees. Thus they have to go on to a college or the military and do not meet the required perfect home schooled young man status for so many of these daddy’s girls across this nation. This is wrong as there are lots of wonderful Christian homes schooled young men pursuing such and more and I would be honored it one of them wanted to pursue one of my girls.

    Once again Michael is correct, the foundations are faulty upon which VF, BCA and NCFIC and more have been built. What I was trying to point out is if we are still home schooling we all have to put each other under grace.We will run into this and will not be able to avoid this as it has been here for too many years.We have too many home schoolers coming from all back grounds. We will need took at the situation from all angles and pick battles that really need to be battles if Christ is going to be taught and caught. Expose true sin and speak out loudly and speak out with our pocket books by not going to these conferences, spreading the word and not buying their products . We need to love the “I only wear skirts group” and they in turn need to recognize those who don’t, as Christians who love the Lord as they do and are equals to them in God’s eyes too. Even if we want to and try to avoid these teachings, until God reveals the whole thing and puts a complete stop to the wrongs, we are going to come up against them in various ways.

    Yes, Boxelder, there was some good such as family restoration for some, but if this good is so good it should not be kept to just this circle and should be preached to all Christians and it should make all feel loved not hurt and shunned. We should not isolate ourselves from other Christians. Yes, we need to discern, but have love, compassion and grace towards our fellow believers. We should not be making ministries that do not include the entire body of Christ and make others feel unloved. This good should be able, if it is truly Christ-like, to reach out to all and love all. Sadly it has not and this is where I have to say no more. Jesus loves us all and wants us to love the unlovable to win them to Him. He lived this example. It is time we need to do so too. ( I see since, it has taken me a long time to be able to do this today, in bits and pieces, that TW and Jen have also posted more on this. I agree to with what they say too.)

    • OtOLi Says:

      Thanks NFA. I really appreciate your comment as well as the ones above by Boxelder, T.W., Jen, and Michael. This is really helpful.

      • Not Fooled Anymore Says:

        You are welcome OtOLi. I pray it will be helpful and even if our pain spares some other family such grief it will be worth it to keep sharing even though it is often very hard for us to do so as in many ways we just want to
        go on with our lives, but feel called to speak up.

    • Michael Says:

      NFA, Thank you for sharing all this. I know it is extremely painful to be that close to the situation, to have been unjustly beat up by these people, and to see no real justice or vindication for what has happened to you. I see your concern for especially the young folks who have been so hurt by all this. I can’t help but believe God will use your experience at some point, and in fact he is already, to help the people who are suffering from all that has happened. The understanding of grace you are acquiring here will greatly bless other people, and really blesses me.

      We have been in and out of exclusive home school churches over the years, have seen the same things happen over and over, and I can tell you I have never had a church leader of any flavor seek us out to make amends. The sad thing in a case like yours is that there are so many, such as the “big names” you have named, that have been guests in your home, that are so afraid to seek out folks like you and simply say, “I’m sorry.” This is so sad, in my mind’s eye because reconciliation is what the Gospel is all about, and they will never experience the release of acknowledging they were wrong. They are so busy trying to protect an organization that they totally miss the alleged purpose of that organization, ministry to real people and real families. They miss grace.

      I have found peace, after going through the battle in my own mind for years, by simply ministering where I can, when I can. I don’t preach or care to. I have very little involvement with the “shakers and movers” (all churches have them), but our family has contact with a handful of other families that we can help, and they help us. We are older than all the families we have contact with, but we have been able to help them in some very practical ways. Maybe we watch a young mom’s little ones for a few hours while she goes to the doctor….that kind of thing. We have been credited with having wisdom and we have to laugh because any wisdom we have gained was in the school of hard knocks, but the understanding doesn’t come any other way.

      One thing I have seen is that the greatest way we have been able to help others is to simply shut my mouth and listen to them. Most of the time just allowing someone to pour out their heart is what they are looking for and need. I used to have bible verses at the ready for every situation (I must have sounded like such a pompous jerk), but now I just put myself in the situation of my friend and love them. I really appreciate people for who they are, not for some image they are trying to portray. Knowing my own weakness before God makes it easy to appreciate the friendship of other people. If I were to write a book on rearing children, the content would be a recitation of the many ways I have screwed up, followed by the advice of not to follow my advice, but to throw ourselves at God’s feet and take solace in the fact that he knows our weakness. He loves us anyway. He won’t leave us. That is enough.

      At the end of the day I can see your family being the ones people, real people, will seek out when they need real help, real friendship. God bless you as you work through this process.

      • Not Fooled Anymore Says:

        Well said and taken to heart with appreciation Michael. We never set out to try to be in this group- we mostly enjoyed the fellowship and stumbled across sin which forced us to stand up for others and our own family. It has been a huge wake up call. I know God has us where He has us and is seeing us through. The example of the science class was good for us and I can see we were able to look at it sensibly not from a reaction and hopefully in a Christ honoring manner as we remained silent at the co-op on it.. Our young adults are slowly healing too, but some with many scars still. Praying the Lord will use this to draw them to him and heal the hurts so they too, who have learned from the school of hard knocks, will go forth as stronger Christians and know what red flags to avoid as they live their lives away from us in their futures. Blessings to you.

    • OtOLi Says:

      NFA (and others), we have friends who are homeschool leaders and regularly invite some of these “celebrities” to conferences as well as having them in their home. I think they are genuine people seeking to build a godly family and encourage others as well. I don’t perceive legalism/control issues with them, but all of this makes me a bit wary. Do you have any advice? Thanks.

  34. Sarah Says:

    @Notfooledanymore Just to add to what you said, Doug painted a completely unrealistic picture of the family in my opinion. In the real world men have to go to work everyday, some working extremely long hours, they cannot take their children to work or help in anyway with educating them. Now Doug Phillips is going to get a taste of the real world. In the real world families with 8 kids don’t spend most of the year travelling all over the world and attending/performing at conferences. People in the real world have to actually work hard to support their families instead of spending donor money 🙂 Doug has failed in training his kids for real life and has encouraged thousands of other fathers to do that same.

    • Not Fooled Anymore Says:

      Agreed Sarah, Thank you for your input. I do still wonder where the $$ is coming from, as the house they supposedly rented is quite nice, very large and in a nice ares. Lots still unanswered that we may never know.

    • Observer Says:

      Sarah: I cannot agree with you more. Lots of way too expensive toys, trips that NOBODY could afford. I just assumed that the family came from money. And honestly not just their father, but our own children had to work awfully hard in their academics.

  35. Michelle Says:

    OtOLi- Please don’t misunderstand me, I am not praising democratic governments, or really any organization for that matter. What I am saying is that some organizations that are designed to govern people are built with checks and balances in place (I understand the effectiveness of these checks and balances is open for discussion) but my point was only to say that religious organizations are designed specifically to give power and control to men with very little accountability.

    I am not really sure how to address your assertion that there can be no bad, suffering, pain or justice without truth. I just… completely don’t agree with you. Maybe it’s a semantic issue? “Truth” vs truth? I hold beliefs, but I think the difference is that when presented with enough evidence, I am willing to learn and change those beliefs. I believe that our understanding of the universe is growing every day, but I also understand and accept that I don’t know or understand everything and that I never will. So yes, there are definitely things I believe to be true, but as we learn more and more, and I am presented with new evidence, I understand that some of those beliefs will have to change. I believe that there are better ways of going about trying to understand the universe and our place in it than, “a really old book says so”.

    The only point I was trying to make was that trying to find the “Truth” instead of trying to understand truth is what leaves you vulnerable to predators who will tell you they know the “Truth.” These predators will wrap up a story about the “Truth”, back it up with easily manipulated text from an old book, and sell it to people who need the “Truth” handed to them with a pretty bow. I don’t really care if people try to see things from a different perspective, but you asked how to prevent things like this from happening and it seems to me that you can protect yourself from predators like Doug Phillips if you allow evidence to form your opinions, instead of bending the evidence to prove your opinions.

    But hey, “whatever gets you through the night.”
    (sorry Jen this is probably in the wrong place again but the “reply” button under OtOLi’s last post is missing….)

    • OtOLi Says:

      Michelle,

      You say that “religious organizations are designed specifically to give power and control to men with very little accountability.” That is no doubt true about some religious organizations (perhaps even most). But the same things could be said of non-religious organizations. In this context, religious organizations are no different than any other organization.

      Yes, I think there are definitely some semantic misunderstandings going on. I think there are also fundamental differences in our faiths. I agree about the importance of examining evidence. But evidence itself does not determine our beliefs. Take, for instance, the creation/evolution debate. Two people can look at the exact same evidence and come to completely different conclusions. In one sense, the evidence doesn’t matter, because the conclusions are not determined by the evidence, but by a person’s underlying assumptions (worldview/presuppositions). Thomas Kuhn wrote about this in “The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.”

      But even deeper than that is the fact that science itself (and the whole idea of proof/evidence) is based on faith. A person cannot even begin to reason apart from faith. The Bible provides a rational basis for faith. Nothing else does. Trying to “understand the universe and our place in it” apart from the Bible requires blind faith.

      Having said that, I do appreciate your warning about “leaders” and not questioning “authorities.” I believe a big part of that problem is the Consumer-Celebrity mindset of our culture.

  36. Dom Walk Says:

    As a hearty “thank you” and encouragement to the work of Jen and T.W, may I cite and link to MacArthur’s latest Grace To You blog post? Keep up the hard work, it is appreciated by many, and so very necessary!

    “Finally, false teachers have a simple motivation: money. They “suppose that godliness” (1 Timothy 6:5, used sarcastically of their false piety) will bring them such gain. Unlike Paul, they cannot say, “I have coveted no one’s silver or gold or clothes” (Acts 20:33). Put simply, they are not “free from the love of money” (1 Timothy 3:3).

    The pathology of false teachers is clear. They deny the truth, and their teaching does not produce godly living. They are arrogant and ignorant of spiritual truth. They spend their time in foolish speculations that lead only to chaos and division. Having forsaken the truth, they face eternal destruction. And they serve money, not God. The church must take extreme care not to allow these men to spread their deadly disease. The resulting epidemic would be tragic.”

    http://www.gty.org/Blog/B140214

  37. Observer Says:

    Jen, TW:

    You might like this article by Mary Pride:

    http://www.home-school.com/Articles/patriarchy-meet-matriarchy.php

  38. Brenda Says:

    I purchased this video with great anticipation and excitement. I thought, wow, home schooled children are making their mark and what an exciting event to be able to attend. I was sorry we couldn’t swing making it happen. After watching it, I didn’t question anything and took it as truth but I do remember having a few questions in the back of my mind that never came to the forefront till reading this. Like, “how could they have quickly found the site and dig so much”. Thank you for your eloquent and factual article. I sorta think its easy to have “itching ears”. Good food for thought. No shortcut to studying God’s word ourselves.

  39. Anew Says:

    Jen I posted a long comment on Jan 30 and you asked me to remind you later regarding your reply to it. You have been very busy with the detailed current article but I thought to just comment here with the reminder you requested. Thanks!

  40. FreeatLast Says:

    I am not sure where to post this, so I will note it here. I want everyone to know that there is a new Christian Film Festival being held here in San Antonio in a couple of weeks. The reason for posting here is to note that we have done an investigation and this film festival is not related to the old Doug Phillips/Vision Forum crowd at all.

    Our family is going to attend and we hope to see some of our old friends there that have been alienated from “the community” by Doug Phillips and his henchmen.

    The website to register is http://www.christianworldviewfilmfestival.com

    We hope to see some of you there!

    • Maxwell Says:

      FreeatLast: “…we have done an investigation and this film festival is not related to the old Doug Phillips/Vision Forum crowd at all.”

      Not sure what investigation you’ve done but personally, I find this a little fishy. SAICFF dies and just like that another Independent Christian Film Festival spring to life… and in San Antonio no less! Amazing!

      As far as the “… not related to the old Doug Phillips/Vision Forum crowd at all.” — well let’s see… Doug was pastor of Boern Christian Assembly and there were at least 2 other churches that were/are ‘Sister’ churches… one (whose name I don’t recall) lead by Norm Wakefield, and one, Living Water Fellowship, lead by “Little Bear” Wheeler. Turns out the guy running the new festival is Phillip Telfer, a pastor at Living Water Fellowship — see last paragraph on the page here: http://www.philliptelfer.com/bio.html I don’t really buy the “… not related to the old Doug Phillips/Vision Forum crowd at all.”

      No, I’m not saying that Mr. Telfer is puppet for Doug Phillips but come on… do you REALLY want to get involved with this? Are you *THAT* desperate for this stuff? Have you not learned ANYTHING from the collapse of Doug Phillips & Vision Forum? Can you not see that you are being played? This is no longer about “reaching the world with the message of Jesus Christ”, this is all about scooping up the money and the power left in the vacuum of the VF collapse.

      • FreeatLast Says:

        Maxwell,

        Of course, it is a free world and you can believe whatever you like. Some people see a conspiracy behind everything.

        I cannot go into all of the details about our investigation, but suffice it to say that there were a lot of folks that liked the SAICFF, and there were many that had spent a considerable amount of time and money preparing films for submission to the SAICFF that was supposed to be held this year, so it isn’t that much of a surprise that someone would see the need for a “new” festival and understand the desire of many to have an outlet to give their films exposure. This is what led to the new festival and that is it.

        The fact that some speakers that have appeared at other film festivals, including the SAICFF, are present doesn’t mean anything except to the conspiracy theory crowd. The fact that someone in the film-making business attended or spoke at the SAICFF doesn’t in anyway mean that person supported Phillip’s. In fact, some of them found him lacking in many areas. BTW, please note that none of the Phillip’s inner-circle people have anything to do with this festival, including Botkin, RC Jr, et al. That should tell you something.

        As to your “guilt by association” statement about Living Water Fellowship and Little Bear, etc. maybe you have missed the point that Little Bear LEFT Boerne Christian Assembly about a decade ago now. He did leave for a reason and it wasn’t because he was a follower of Phillips. If anything, you are making the case the opposite way of that which you intended.

        I would exhort everyone on here not to overreact as some have. Some are all too willing to cast stones at those that may have had an indirect, or even direct, relationship with Phillips. For the record, they are not all evil people with evil and sinister motives. Some of them are my friends, and like my family, left the BCA crowd for the right reasons and now some folks desire to lump people that did the right thing in with Phillips, et al. It’s almost like some people that have posted on here are part of a lynch mob, or at least have that mentality.

        The very humble Kendrick brothers that were behind the movie “Fire Proof” have attended Phillip’s festivals in the past. Are they now rotten also?

        • Eva Says:

          Also, you are the one who posted the link to the christianworldviewfilmfestival web site. That’s where I found the so-called “unsubstantiated” information above.

    • Eva Says:

      Check out the speakers. Some of them sound like they have Doug Phillips written all over them. One worked on the film “Alone yet not Alone”.

      • FreeatLast Says:

        If you are going to make such a broad and unsubstantiated accusation, how about naming the speakers and telling the rest of us exactly how “they have Doug Phillips written all over them”. It is easy to hide behind gross generalizations that imply wrong-doing with no proof.

        Wow, “One worked on the film “Alone yet not Alone”.” And, did you know, that same one even used the same restroom that Phillips used? And another one was even in San Antonio the same time Phillips was there….Wow! I heard even one of them likes the same kind of food as Phillips!

        • Eva Says:

          The speakers are listed on the website. You only have to read it for yourself to see what I saw.

        • Bbb Says:

          I posted a direct quote from the film festival earlier on another topic post. I wrote Phillip directly and asked him if they were related. This festival is sponsored by media talk 101. They are not patriarchy in any way and have women and men employed, teaching, etc. Look for my post.

          We will also attend and have a film in the festival. We are southern Baptist if that gives you some perspective.

        • FreeatLast Says:

          Eva,

          Some of us are not as good as you at reading into the speakers listed on the website that “…sound like they have Doug Phillips written all over them.” so maybe you would be so kind and helpful as to enlighten the rest of us.

          Again, I challenge you, if you are going to make such a broad and unsubstantiated accusation, how about naming the speakers and telling the rest of us exactly how “they have Doug Phillips written all over them”. It is easy to hide behind gross generalizations that imply wrong-doing with no proof. Maybe you could give us just one example.

    • PioneerHomeschooler Says:

      I am heartbroken for the people who, even while recovering from victimization, pay good money to give someone a chance to do it all again.

      • FreeatLast Says:

        You know, not everyone on here is playing the “victim” game. And, it is insulting to those that truly are victims, and there have been many, to insinuate that everyone that ever heard a Phillip’s message, went to the same church, knew Phillips, or worked with him, is a “victim”. Some folks, regardless of Phillip’s weaknesses and sins, have benefited greatly from many of the things he has done. My family is one of those. Not everything he did was evil. This is in no way meant to be a defense of what he did do wrongly.

        • Half Truths Abound Says:

          Maybe victim isn’t the right word, but mislead they are. I would be happy to never see the film festival return. It has already been a fantastic waste and distraction of many young people’s lives, time, and talent.

        • FreeatLast Says:

          Your assumption is it is the same “film festival”. You reveal that with your words when you say “…never see the film festival return”. I don’t want to see the SAICFF ever return again either, especially with its Hollywood atmosphere, high expense, and some of the films that were inappropriate. However, I am glad to see another film festival that is unrelated to the SAICFF spring-up and provide a forum for those that desire such. Please don’d deny others their liberty in Christ to have a film festival. If you don’t want to attend fine, but the fact you don’t like it, or don’t go, doesn’t mean it is a waste of someone else’s money if they do go.

          Finally, your comment about the young people is flat-out wrong. No “film festival” led any of them astray, etc. Their own lust, pride, and arrogance may have led them astray, or men like Phillips, but there is nothing inherently wrong with a film festival.

          This is exactly what I mean when I talk about some folks having a “lynch mob” mentality on here. Some have felt that their liberty was violated by Phillips, etc. and now these same folks would deny others their liberty. Be careful…remember what comes after pride!

        • Half Truths Abound Says:

          You misunderstand me. I’ve been around the inside enough to see some stuff that makes me weep. I see a lot of the same young people that got the stars in their eyes jumping on the bandwagon for this one and it strikes me that they are still following the mindset that they learned from the folks they want to be done with. Yes, they are culpable for their own actions, but they were enabled by those leading the movement and were encouraged by the possibility of financial gain that usually never materialized. They are not victims but are being encouraged to follow what is in most cases a pipe dream. They were led to believe that they could make a living out of it and many of them abandoned other skills they probably should have pursued instead. They haven’t learned the lessons.
          I’m not denying their liberty to do this, but sorry to see it happen.

        • FreeatLast Says:

          I agree with your concerns. I have shared similar concerns before. So, what if in this film festival there is balance and the young people are encouraged to stay out of film unless they are absolutely sure that is their calling? If you have seen Phillip Telfer’s movie, Captivated, you will know that he has a healthy concern for media and how it is being used, etc. I have heard him in public suggest that film-making may not be the direction that God has for young people and he gives many cautions. That is one of the reasons I am encouraged about this festival; Telfer has the opportunity to steer it another direction than Phillip’s did.

        • oinkjonesjoetaylor Says:

          It is ironic that the Fisher brothers used their talent to make a film for Doug about the Allosaur and never contacted me to use any of the hours of footage and hundreds of stills about the real and actual excavation from start to finish of the Allosaur, with video of Dana Forbes telling how he found the Allosaur and excavated on it before any of us, Joe Taylor, DeRosas or Doug ever got there. At a conference in 1982, that apparently Doug Phillips atended, I called for a symposium on how Christians could make low budget films. Doug’s film fest was just that. It would have been great if any of the film makers would have come to Mt. Blanco Museum and helped us make a series of actual documentary films about real fossil evidence that supports creation using our hundreds of hours of film of actual excavations and thousands of supporting stills from 1977 to now, not to mention, access to our research library of fossil facts and all the areas of science. We would discuss it with any Christian film makers. Our contact: mtblanco1@aol.com ask for Joe Taylor

    • Dom Walk Says:

      I would submit that another important lesson from the Phillips Phiasco is that the focus on things of this world, especially “pop culture” things, leads to worldly-ism. There will always be “Christian leaders” ready to lead people off into distractions from the Gospel. Beware.

  41. Ann Says:

    I think these men can only have a little kingdom when there are enough serfs to keep a blind eye and hold them unaccountable. I hold the VF devotees also responsible for some of the mess….even though there is a “cult like” atmosphere. Too many people have feared a MAN, and not God. Why can’t the true Christians rise up, walk away and get on with life? I think the whole patriarchy thing preys on weakness, not strength. Sad.

    • Dom Walk Says:

      Apologies in advance for the length of this citation.

      Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples, Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat: All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not. For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers. But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi. But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ. But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant. And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.

      But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.

      Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

      Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor! Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold? And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty. Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift? Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon. And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein. And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon.

      Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone. Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.

      Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.

      Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.

  42. Andrew Says:

    I would be curious about your opinion on this news topic about Patrick Henry, if you have time.
    http://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/another-phc-update/

  43. FreeWoman Says:

    I’m curious why things have been so silent here for a while. When will you be posting again?

  44. brian Says:

    I see the tool shed has had a new wing built on to it.

  45. Maria Godyeva Says:

    I don’t have the time to read everything that is posted here but have read enough to appreciate the work that you are doing.
    If you plan to do a post on patriarchy you ought to watch a wedding ceremony that Scott Brown performed in Massachusetts on February 1st of this year. The wedding of Joshua Harris (former VF intern) and Tabitha Mello. Listen closely and you will be shocked at the aberrant teachings of this man. The worst part? That so many people can listen to him and not see anything wrong with his message.
    As a side note, DP was supposed to perform the ceremony but his “confession” caused the groom to ask SB instead. Mr. Phillips and his family were invited to the wedding but did not attend.

    • Half truths abound Says:

      I was there… SB is going to be a tricky one to deal with. He’s already survived the issues that came up in NC earlier.

      • Wondering Says:

        You were there also – can we get a copy of his message?

        • Maria Godyeva Says:

          The livestream will be up for a few more days. Go to FB, JohnandStephanieHarris and watch it. Mr. Brown started his address by telling the bride that if she doesn’t” joyfully submit” to her husband the “whole thing will unravel.” When addressing the groom he said repeatedly “You are Christ.” Brown claims that his own wife has been a “happy, productive church” for him.

      • Michael Says:

        He’ll crash at some point. I’m confident of that. They all do.

  46. Wondering Says:

    Would you have a copy of that wedding ceremony you mention? How could we find it?

  47. oinkjonesjoetaylorJoe Taylor Says:

    When DP’s board was told about the problem with the allosaur, they replied that they were not an accountability board. They have proved it.

    • Jean Says:

      Who was on the board when you were told they were not an accountability board?

      • T.W. Eston Says:

        Jean, here’s a breakdown of the Vision Forum Ministries board of directors in 2004 and 2005. I’ve also shown the compensation of those directors who were paid.

        2004:
        Doug Phillips, President/Treasurer, compensation $59,521
        Howard Phillips, VP
        Jim Zes, Secretary/Director
        Don Hart, Director
        Ken Kennedy, Director

        2005:
        Doug Phillips, President/Treasurer, compensation $42,570
        Howard Phillips, VP
        Jim Zes, Secretary/Director
        Don Hart, Director
        Scott Brown, Director, compensation $53,089

        Scott Brown has been a compensated board member from 2005 until the present.

  48. Andrew McDonald Says:

    Would like to hear about this as well.

    • Sally Says:

      What a beautiful wedding. Praise the Lord!

      • Maria Godyeva Says:

        Dear Sally,
        There were beautiful elements in the wedding, especially the way the groom opened the ceremony and the simple (“normal”) words from the father of the bride.

        There were serious issues with much that was said, especially in the delivery of SB. If you can’t identify those I feel bad for you and have to wonder how much “Kool Aid” you have been served. What do you think of the father of the groom commanding his son to “have many children”? They can only have as many as the Lord sees fit.

        To be sure there were lovely aspects to the wedding . . . but it is imperative that we don’t swallow all things without testing them against the clear teaching of Scripture.

        Let us have the courage to test all things and hold to what is true.

        • Observer Says:

          Maria: I listened to some of this yet I did not catch the groom’s father telling his son to have many children. I sorta think it is none of groom’s father’s business.. (that’s me though). I did catch Scott Brown saying that the “whole thing will unravel”—very strong words. All sin (including rebellion) causes things to unravel. I wish someone could put the entire text in print. This is my first introduction to Patriarchy outside of Doug :Phillips and it bears looking into.

    • Brandon G Says:

      Just use Bugmenot.com is your friend. Make sure someone downloads it for save keeping.

    • hallo there Says:

      You don’t need a livestream account if you watch it here:

      http://jsfiddle.net/TwY9L/embedded/result/

      The file seems to be a 2gb FLV if you want to download it.

      Hope that helps.

      • Rebecca Says:

        We were invited to watch this wedding via live stream and while I agree there were very beautiful elements to the service I was completely blown away by SB’s sermon and particularly how aggressively he spoke against the bride and her duty to obey her husband. The young Tabitha actually pledged in her vows to obey her husband and be a happy keeper at home. I can’t imagine being that young bride and pledging those things to my own husband. “I promise to obey you.” Where is the love in that? SB made it clear that women ARE the weaker vessel and prone to strong emotions so the husband will need to lead her and guide her and of course her only duty is to submit. Such a beautiful wedding, yet so sad so many are deceived by these teachings.

  49. Jessica Says:

    Anything new going on with the Doug Phillips scandal? Is he going to be charged?There is no info I can find through Google. Just waiting for your news updates!! 🙂 Is “Cassandra” going to out him or press charges or her family? Thank you for all you write Jen!

    • Matt Says:

      I wish something would happen. I miss my daily dose of Doug. At least with Gothard, PHC, and the upcoming report on BJU, I don’t have to look far to get my fill of sordid fundagelical scandal details!

      Still, Doug will always be my favorite degenerate. Thanks for the memories!

      • FreeatLast Says:

        Some of you should consider getting a real life!

        • FreeatLast Says:

          While you are waiting for juicy details here, may I suggest you go to the grocery store and purchase a magazine called “Globe”. That may satisfy your appetite while you are waiting.

        • xmattfoleyx Says:

          “Some of you should consider getting a real life!”

          Dude, you’re posting on this degenerate too. Pot, meet kettle.

  50. T.W. Eston Says:

    Randy Gavin, co-author of Raising The Truth, posted an excellent comment several years back about Raising The Allosaur on the Midwest Christian Outreach blog. I think his comment is well worth reposting here:

    Randy Gavin says:
    April 6, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    Gregory wondered if he was on a Christian Website. I wonder if Gregory is a Christian. If a man thinks that it is unchristian to put your finger on a mans chest and challenge his hypocrisy then that man obviously does not know much about Jesus of Nazareth. That man should read Matthew 23 one of many instances of Jesus’ head on collisions with the bad character and bad doctrine of the religious leaders. And a man should be just a little curious that this Doug Phillips is being scrutinized, there may be a very good reason for it.

    While we worry for the Church and the direction such misapplication of doctrine by Phillips and his followers documentably are causing and will cause, let us not forget that the character of the man who speaks is still important. Let us not adopt the worlds standard that character and personal morals are not important. If we believe character matters in a President of the United States, the scripture is all the more certain in it’s call for the Church to judge itself, character must exhibit itself.

    We can focus on and expose Phillips aberant application of biblical teaching, but we should not do so to the exclusion of examination of his character as it pertains to his public morality.For a man’s character most certainly is the greatest witness to the mans closely held doctrines.

    Aberant doctrines and their application do not emanate from faith, hope and charity nor from the keeping of the two great commandments Jesus gave us. On the other hand, twisted doctrine and application have their origins in trespass, the breaking of the laws of God.

    To the point, Doug Phillips produced a film and profited from its sale and distribution based on someone elses work. His theft of that credit for the work materially harmed individuals. He even used his legalese to badger and cajole and stall and starve out his victims. While he continues to profit on the foundation built so treacherously, he leaves a wreck of those he robbed. We cite Phillips not as a man who crossed to the other side of the road to avoid assistence to a fellow traveler, indeed Phillips in this case is the man guilty of the assault and robbery.

    In all this Mr Phillips has broken the Ten Commandments unabashedly and continues in the booty of his stolen goods(Thou shalt not steal) and the worldly glory of his falsley born witness(Thou shalt not bear false witness).

    His first film Raising the Allosaur was made to show his intimate connection with the discovery and excavation of a dinosaur. The truth was he had contracted with Creation Studies Institute for a tour to the already excavated Allosaur Site. The unseemly behind the scenes activities and lies Phillips engaged in to become leader of the ‘dicoverers and excavators’ are both engrossing and disheartening. Unlike a half hour TV show where justice is accomplished by the end of the 30 minutes, several years have been insufficient for Phillips to either repent or make things right with those he has robbed and born false witness against. Scott Brown a board member does say that ‘Doug confessed to making serious mistakes based on Pete DeRosas deceptions’. However what the board was not aware of were any details. Phillips using his legal background led a quasi-legal battle thru threats intimidation and spiritual blackmail against his victims.

    The majority of the problem seems to be that like Gregory, no one wants to say the truth about Mr Phillips and his evil deeds. He has his family spread about him in photo-ops just as a politician before the cameras or a criminal before the sentencing judge displays his family.

    Until Mr Phillips tells the truth publicly to the audience to whom he promoted and sold his film Raising the Allosaur, those of us who have taken the time to know the truth are not impressed by his platitudes and stolen words and even less by those that prop him up in his transgression. It would be autocratic to suspect Ken Ham of being cut from the same cloth just because he accepted the ‘George Washington’ award from Phillips, so we won’t, however it does make us wonder since Ken always refused to sell Phillips film. Ken’s promotion of Phillips is perplexing in that Ken’s intimate knowledge of the allosaur story only leaves one conclusion about Phillips and his film.

    Phillips uses the film as his credential for a film festival he started. He even made up his own ten commandments for his film festival. it is no surprize that Phillips breaks his own commandments too.

  51. FreeWoman Says:

    It’s been more than a month since your last post here. The silence is a little unsettling. What’s going on?

    • OtOLi Says:

      I know T.W. mentioned at one point another related big scandal coming soon. I suspect he was referring to what has since transpired with Bill Gothard. I don’t know if he was busy with that recently, but in any case, this blog is focused on Doug Phillips, so maybe that’s why things have been a little quiet around here.

    • T.W. Eston Says:

      Jen is busy with work, and I’m busy with other things. No significant news to report at this time, but there will be something significant forthcoming soon. Stay tuned.

      I should have been in a position by now to have exposed far more than I have so far. The problem is that too many of the eye witnesses and direct participants in Doug’s despicable deeds are either afraid to come forward, or they are too ashamed to talk about it because they are complicit themselves, either by directly aiding and abetting, or by remaining silent when they should have spoken out years ago. To them I would say confession is good for the soul.

      As I responded to a gentleman’s email recently:

      “Doug has sinned and compromised himself in some of the most egregious ways possible. One of the great complications in fully exposing him is that the young men who would be in the best position to come forward and expose him are the very ones who have compromised themselves in the process with him. They can’t expose him without also exposing themselves, or so they believe.

      “It’s not hard to imagine the kind of shame and humiliation they live under and why they hope these matters never come to light. However, as I’ve communicated to one of those key witnesses, it’s possible to expose DP without exposing those who were his victims, or perhaps even those who aided and abetted him (provided they have already repented to those they harmed).”

  52. DesiringToDiscern Says:

    NOT repentant. NOT a nice person…lest there be any doubt http://www.worldmag.com/2014/03/set_adrift/page1

    • Jean Says:

      This was an excellent article. Very interesting regarding DP’s threat to sue those men from VFM. Will they be silenced because of fear? Will this threat from Phillip’s lawyer intimidate men who should have gone public long before a few months ago? Does anyone – ANYONE – think this man is repentant?

  53. Observer Says:

    Excellent article. What the article does confirm is that what TW and Jen were saying were accurate all along. The lawsuits confirm TW’s statements of the fear people were living under. Not so sure “normal” people know how to defend themselves—legal counsel, etc.

  54. Sarah Says:

    Jordan, Peter, and Bob and more then capable of looking out for themselves.

  55. Dom Walk Says:

    Is this the same skeleton, about to make an appearance at AIG?

    http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/2013/10/21/dinosaur-fossil-creation-museum

  56. Reality Says:

    This Allosaur scandal is fertile ground for Lourdes’ attorney to dig through (no pun intended) to make a case that the board of VFM is an enabler of bad behavior.

  57. EyesWideOpen Says:

    Anyone else see this article? Notice who the pastor was here…
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/13/jackson-family-abuse_n_5317197.html

  58. EyesWideOpen Says:

    Whatever happened with all this?

  59. The Skeleton in Doug Phillips’s Closet Is Now in the Creation Museum. Literally. | Homeschoolers Anonymous Says:

    […] Ham nor his organization have ever called out Phillips’ attempts at deception and theft, despite being asked to in 2007. Instead, Ham eagerly accepted Vision Forum’s “George Washington Award Man of the […]

  60. Sarah P. Says:

    You all need to check your facts before you make these kinds of accusations. I am especially disturbed that you would bring Ken Ham’s name into this. He is doing a great work for the Lord – especially when he brings the Gospel and Creation into the public schools. This is so necessary to battle what they are teaching. Also, aren’t he and the DeRosas still friends? You said that they are working for him now. I met them on a homeschool trip and they seemed like a very commited and Godly family. I’m pretty sure that their names are on the dinosaur display at Answers in Genesis, right? How would that happen if it wasn’t right? Please stop spreading this misinformation.


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