Motivation for this ATG Web Page

A lot of people have written me to inquire about my ATG web page. Below are answers to the most common questions I receive.
1. What was the motivation for you to create the ATG web page?

I originally became interested in ATG because of their ties to TradeNet (perpetrators of a laundry ball scam), and TradeNet's involvement with the cult of Scientology. I am a free speech activist, and consequently, a long-time opponent of the Scientology cult.

When I learned more about ATG, I was eventually convinced that their own connections to Scientology were minor. But I remain interested in them for another reason. I believe they have engaged in scientific fraud and securities fraud. As they are a publicly traded company, this needs to be exposed. I am amazed that they somehow managed to get a bunch of professors at respectable universities to lend their good names to this charade. This also needs to be exposed.

I am a scientist myself, on the research faculty at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. I use computers to study how brains work. In addition to research, I also train PhD students, and I am involved in ethics education for graduate students. I find it an interesting exercise to try to expose these pseudoscientific con artists and see what happens. Will they change their tune? Will they use legal threats to try to shut me up? They tried threatening my employer in order to force removal of my web page, but it didn't work. What will they try next? We'll see. I am not easily intimidated.

2. ATG says they are not affiliated with Scientology. So why are you still picking on them?

After a lengthy dialog with ATG founder John Collins, I am convinced that ATG is not affiliated with the Scientology cult, despite the fact that a few current and past employees are members. So now they're just ordinary run-of-the-mill scam artists instead of Scientology-inspired scam artists. They still deserve exposure. Sunshine is the best disinfectant.

3. Have you ever been a Scientologist yourself?

No. I have never taken a Scientology course, gotten Scientology counseling, or purchased any goods or services from Scientology or any Scientology-controlled group. I knew nothing about Scientology until August 1995, when I stumbled into the Usenet newsgroup alt.religion.scientology and began learning about their attempts to suppress free speech on the Internet. Since that time, I've read the cult's secret scriptures and learned quite a bit about how the organization operates. I have also met many current and ex-Scientologists. More information about my activities involving Scientology and the Internet can be found in this newsletter article.

4. What is your financial interest in ATG?

None whatsoever. I have never invested in ATG or any of its affiliates (TradeNet, 21st Century, IHI, etc.) I do not stand to make any money if their stock price goes down, or lose any if the price goes up. I also have no relationship to any competitors of ATG or 21st Century (e.g., Amway, NuSkin, Herbalife, and so forth.)

5. Is 21st Century a ripoff? Is Mark Yarnell a crook?

21st Century is providing inaccurate information to its distributors in an attempt to hype its line of products supposedly containing IE crystals. Whether this is due to mere sloppiness and gullibility on the part of Mark Yarnell, Donnie Walker, Rich Morgan, and their associates, or something more calculated, is not for me to say. However, if I were a prospective distributor of these products, I would demand to see reports from independent testing laboratories certifying that IE crystals really do exist, and that the products containing them are measurably superior to the many competing products already on the market. I would not simply take Mark Yarnell's word for it. Without such proof, supplied to me in writing, I would not even consider getting involved with this company.

Dave Touretzky
Last modified: Sat Oct 24 21:45:16 EDT 1998