Effective today, we’re retiring the brand identity of JohnPCapitalist.com in favor of a new site name. We’re now posting at Reasoned.life. Yeah, there really is such a thing as a “.life” domain name, and we thought that it sounded cooler than “reasonedlife.com.” Cheaper, too: $1.99 to register the name for the first year instead of the ten bucks for a “.com” domain.
It’s Not About Me Anymore
Most importantly, this blog is evolving into something far more than it started out to be when I started it four years ago: it’s no longer just my opinion about Scientology. We’re now building a community of writers and thinkers and we needed to create room for them. It’s not much of an incentive for people to join the party when it’s all appearing under my name. So we needed a name that supports the vision that we’re a community of like-minded people, not just John P.’s personal soapbox.
It’s about how we roll…
… and where we might go
We write using reason and evidence. As long as we were rebranding, we wanted to pick a name that would capture our style and that would provide a big enough umbrella to cover everything that we might want to write about. We realized that the unifying thread was all about our approach, rather than the specific subject. We’re about using the most reasoned argument we can come up with, doing deep research, having an opinion and then doing our best to back up the opinion with all the facts and evidence we can muster. When we figured that out, the name was obvious.
Our commitment to researching Scientology remains unchanged. We want room to look at any subjects where we, or any writers that we add in the future, can bring intellectual heft to taking a stand about an issue. But we’re not abandoning our focus on Scientology. Scientology will always be our center.
How can you be sure? Simple: this cult is a subject we’ve spent years researching on and writing about. I’ve written well over a million words in comments on Tony Ortega’s blog and other places in the last seven years and another 300,000 words on this site. Depending on how you slice it, that’s 6-10 books’ worth of text, and there are thousands of hours of research standing behind all that lurid prose. I’m not going to toss that investment away by bounding off to write about the next bright shiny object. Similarly, Dr. Jeff has been following Scientology for several years, and has the specialized knowledge and firepower to make significant original contributions in areas that nobody has been able to touch him before.
So where might we go in the future? The most obvious thing for us to look at is other cults. The article I wrote recently on the arrest of the founder of the Nxivm group was the most popular article we’ve published so far in 2018. The value to Scientology-watchers when we look at other groups is to help us understand Scientology better, and how to assess tactics that succeed or fail in dealing with other groups. And we have an opportunity to share with activists opposing other groups what the community of Scientology critics have learned about dealing with what may well be the most destructive cult in the last 50 years. That’s especially important today, because fear and uncertainty are the breeding grounds that may already be leading to the creation of new cults and stronger momentum behind small existing cults. There are a lot of lives at risk, and the knowledge of this community can help save them.
Longer-term, beyond cults, we’ve got a notion of trying to help people build a toolset to deal with other forms of life-destroying intellectual fraud. We’re still in the very early stages of figuring out where we might have an impact, but we have some preliminary thoughts. We’re definitely not going to get into debunking things like UFOs and paranormal phenomena, for instance.
That’s the long term vision and we’re in no hurry to get there, but we figured we ought to rebrand the site now and do it once so that we can easily move wherever your interest and our expertise takes us.
It’s Your Show Too
Sit back and enjoy. We look forward to having you enjoy the new and improved model. We’re certainly open to your comments and suggestions for what to do and how to do it better. Use the contact form to get in touch.
And if you want to be a partner, think about signing up to contribute. We welcome prospective contributors, whether you want a regular slot or would like to contribute occasionally. We’re all for it. We’re not the grammar police. Really.
A note about the musical accompaniment: Dr. Jeff and I are both pretty passionate Steely Dan fans, just like many of our readers. But we’re willing to entertain other musical accompaniment for articles you contribute.
Oh, and don’t worry about the details: all the comments on Disqus have moved over; your Disqus IDs should continue to work without change, your e-mail subscriptions will continue, links and bookmarks to pages on the old johnpcapitalist.com site should redirect seamlessly, yada yada yada…