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 Libel victory for hypnotist McKenna

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
mark-gil Posted - 07/29/2006 : 4:51:17 PM
Libel victory for hypnotist McKenna

Friday July 28, 2006 10:48 AM
from Guardian Newspaper

Hypnotist Paul McKenna has won his libel action over a claim that he bought a fake doctorate.

The ruling on liability - with the question of damages to follow in October - followed a trial at which he said that he had been made a "laughing stock".

McKenna, whose self-help business has an annual turnover of £2.5 million, was not at London's High Court for the ruling.

He said that he was "pilloried" by journalist Victor Lewis-Smith from 1997 onwards and was devastated by another mention of his "bogus degree" from La Salle University, Louisiana, in an October 2003 article in The Mirror.

In it, Lewis-Smith, said: "I discovered that anyone could be fully doctored by Lasalle within months (no previous qualifications needed), just so long as they could answer the following question correctly: "Do you have 2,615 dollars, sir?".

The newspaper's publishers, who denied libel and pleaded justification, called evidence from Lewis-Smith's co-writer, Paul Sparks, who said that he was told by La Salle that he could obtain a doctorate for that fee within a matter of months and without undertaking any formal course.

Mr Justice Eady, who heard the case without a jury, said he could not accept that the newspaper had discharged the burden of proving that the sting of the words complained of was substantially true.

"Mr McKenna was not, in my judgment, dishonest and, for that matter, whatever one may think of the academic quality of his work, or of the degree granted by La Salle, it would not be accurate to describe it as "bogus".

"It was certainly not granted 'merely' for money (or even 'in effect' merely for money).

"The claimant is therefore entitled to succeed on liability."

5   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
DesElms Posted - 09/14/2006 : 8:50:01 PM
My knowledge of the case is not merely from media reports... as should be obvious from the content of my article. I have read the court documents; so I know exactly what the case was about. That said, I can attest that your characterization of it is a gross oversimplification, at best.

Moreover, if one knows anything about how real institutions of higher learning work versus how diploma mills work, generally; and how LaSalle worked, specifically, one would be forced to agree that there is simply no possible way that McKenna could not have known either before he applied for admission to the LaSalle PhD program, or almost immediately after same, that it was bogus. No possible way.

Bilko Posted - 09/14/2006 : 3:41:48 PM
The issue in the court wasn't about whether or not the PhD was bogus, but whether or not McKenna KNEW it was bogus and thereofre misled people. The ruling was therefore about McKenna's knowledge, and not about the validity of the qualification.
DesElms Posted - 08/05/2006 : 12:48:44 PM
Originally posted by mark-gil

...next time try checking out my feelings before writing about them.
Sorry. When I got my hypnosis training so many years ago, I missed the classes where they covered all the psychic stuff.

(just kidding)

mark-gil Posted - 08/04/2006 : 11:48:20 PM
I have no issues with Mr. Boyne; and I have no problem with him posting here in celebration of Mr. McKenna's victory if that's how he really feels.

Hello Gregg, Here are the real facts of my action and my intent in posting about the Mckenna trial. I found the post on a UK hypnosis message board titled hypnoforum.co.uk. I checked the post against the Guardian published story and discovered the poster (forum host) had deleted the last paragraph about the judges'words. I copied the full story as it appeared in the Guardian and posted it here. The title was from the hypnoforum post. I neither celebrate nor express any feeling (to use your word) about it. It is simply posted as an news item of possible interest to hypnotists.

I know of Mr. Boyne's work, and I respect it and him. I might disagree with him on some accreditation and certain other issues, but there is no question that he knows what he's talking about when it comes to the fundamentals of hypnosis and hypnotherapy; and that he's basically ethical and responsible and worthy of trust and admiration. So, please, Mr. Boyne, do not be offended by my replying, as I am doing here, to your post

I thank you for your kind words and I do not take offense at your reply----I am puzzled that you can do such research and speak so factually and elegantly and openly on this subject and yet you presume to know my feelings and motive in posting a news story without my changing, editing or deleting any part of it.
I share your knowledge and opinion of La Salle degrees and about the whole issue of Doctor of Hypnotherapy degrees and I do celebrate your airing of the issues involved in use of these degrees.
I had advised many not to purchase such degrees. Some have followed my advice and some have ignored it. Many in our profession scorn the user of such degrees. No need for apology but next time try checking out my feelings before writing about them.
With Respect, Gil Boyne
DesElms Posted - 08/04/2006 : 5:20:14 PM
I thought that maybe someone would come here and make a posting which appears to celebrate Mr. McKenna's court victory; and I'm sure there are people here who are happy about it. I don't know Mr. McKenna or very much about his work or his company; but I do know a lot about the subject of accreditation, and the dangers of diploma mills and fake degrees, generally... as should be abundantly clear by some of my other postings here... particularly my postings on the matter in this thread:I also happen to know a lot about Mr. McKenna's case, having followed it closely throughout, and having read relevant court documents myself.

Before I criticize Mr. McKenna and the judge in his case, as I'm about to do, here (below), I also want to point out that I'm by no means "anti" hypnosis or hypnotherapy (though I'm no fan of stage hypnotists, for what that's worth). I received extensive hypnosis/hypnotherapy training many years ago, but do not, today, use it in any sort of professional way.

Moreover, I have nothing against Mr. McKenna... except, of course, for the fact that, notwithstanding how the judge ruled, he has a bogus PhD and misleads anyone before whom he claims it. For all I know, Mr. McKenna has helped thousands of people, is good at what he does, and deserves all the praise and respect that can be heaped upon him for those things. But that doesn't change the fact that his degree really is bogus; and the so-called "university" from whence it came was a bona fide diploma mill... no matter what Mr. McKenna claims to the contrary, and no matter how the judge ruled in his case. The ruling was a bad one -- one that has the potential to harm people -- and as an anti-diploma mill activist, I am compelled to speak out about it. The commentary/opinion article I have included here, below, completely explains why I take my strong and apparently-unpopular (at least around here, I'm guessing) position.

Finally, I want to make it clear (just because I fear that if I don't, Mr. Boyne will make a defensive reply posting in which he behaves as if I had taken a shot at him) that I have no issues with Mr. Boyne; and I have no problem with him posting here in celebration of Mr. McKenna's victory if that's how he really feels. I know of Mr. Boyne's work, and I respect it and him. I might disagree with him on some accreditation and certain other issues, but there is no question that he knows what he's talking about when it comes to the fundamentals of hypnosis and hypnotherapy; and that he's basically ethical and responsible and worthy of trust and admiration. So, please, Mr. Boyne, do not be offended by my replying, as I am doing here, to your post.

This week, I submitted the following commentary/opinion article to the Daily Mirror newspaper in London. I cannot and will not disclose here what was their reaction and/or their indication of willingness, one way or the other, to print it... other than to say that if they don't end-up printing it, it would be understandable since the financial award that it will eventually be ordered to pay Mr. McKenna has yet to be determined, and since the Mirror's lawyers may want it to restrict its comments on the case until all that is settled... probably in October, as nearly as anyone can tell.

Still, I wanted to post the article here so that we can all benefit from it. If Mr. McKenna wants to sue me here in the US over it, then I welcome him to try. Every last statement of fact in it is provably true, and the rest is merely opinion; and that makes me, in this case, lawsuit-proof (or, at least, judgement-proof) anywhere in the United States. And since that's both where I am, and where this article is appearing, that's the only place where anyone could sue me, if they stupidly wanted to try.


The Opinion of an American regarding the
recent McKenna vs. Daily Mirror ruling

by Gregg L. DesElms
Napa, California, USA

August 2, 2006

Last week, 42-year-old hypnotist and entertainer Paul McKenna, well-known to British television viewers, won his libel lawsuit against London’s Daily Mirror newspaper in which he claimed to have been “pilloried” from 1997 through 2003 by Mirror columnist Victor Lewis-Smith in a series of articles wherein McKenna’s PhD in hypnotherapy was characterized as “bogus,” and the institution which issued it (the now-defunct LaSalle University in Louisiana) was called a “diploma mill.”

McKenna claimed that he ignored Lewis-Smith’s barbs and mocking for six years, even though he had been made “a laughing stock” by the newspaper. Finally, however, in October 2003, McKenna decided enough was enough after Lewis-Smith wrote: “I discovered that anyone could be fully doctored by LaSalle within months (no previous qualifications needed), just so long as they could answer the following question correctly, ‘Do you have $2,615.00, sir?’.”

McKenna alleged that, over time, he lost an estimated £1.5 million in potential earnings because of poor ticket sales, claiming that the defamation had led to the cancellation of some of his tour dates.

In this writer’s opinion, the judge took into consideration things which should not have mattered; and his ruling against the Mirror was both stunning and wrong. The issue at hand should have been whether Mr. McKenna’s “PhD” in hypnotherapy is, indeed, bogus, based, in part, on the question of whether LaSalle University was a diploma/degree mill at the time he obtained it, and whether he actually had to do any meaningful academic work to earn it...

...or at least those would have been the issues — and, quite likely the only issues — had the case been heard in a US court of law. Sadly, the case was heard in the UK, where the laws of defamation are not-insignificantly different from those in the US; where free speech by members of the UK press is not as assiduously protected, nor in quite the same manner, as said rights typically are in the US; and where such things as government-sanctioned book banning and out-and-out governmental censorship still routinely occur. Notwithstanding the US legal system’s having been based upon it, the UK’s legal system is a decidedly different paradigm... one that, if viewed from a purely US perspective, can be full of surprises.

To my surprise and utter astonishment, the judge in Mr. McKenna’s case ruled that the following, seemingly inconsequential things mattered: What McKenna knew or didn’t know (his state of mind) at the time he obtained his so-called “degree”; the manner in which he subsequently used said “degree,” and whether the evidence showed that he intended to actually defraud anyone; his sincerity as evidenced by the vigor with which he pursued the lawsuit; and his candor, as evidenced by his demeanor on the witness stand. Considering such factors as those in a similar sort of defamation case in the US would be all but unheard of... but I must remind myself that we’re talking about the UK, here.

“Mr. McKenna was not, in my judgment, dishonest,” wrote Mr. Justice Eady, who heard the case, without a jury, and issued last week’s surprising ruling. “[A]nd, for that matter,” the judge continued, “whatever one may think of the academic quality of his work, or of the degree granted by LaSalle, it would not be accurate to describe it as ‘bogus’. It was certainly not granted ‘merely’ for money (or even ‘in effect’ merely for money). The claimant is therefore entitled to succeed on liability.”

The judge also said that McKenna’s sincerity and naivete was evidenced by the determination with which he had pursued the claim, adding that it was apparent that McKenna was not trying to “hoodwink” the Court while on the witness stand.

In that regard, the judge wrote of McKenna: “He was determined, indignant, and manifestly proud of his work (whatever anybody else may think of it), which he regards as original and as having made a practical contribution to improving the lives of many people. Whether it is appropriate to characterise it as scholarship worthy of academic recognition is another matter. No doubt many would think not. But one thing which is entirely clear to me is that Mr. McKenna to this day does not believe it was bogus or that he misled anyone in allowing himself to be referred to as a ‘PhD’.”

There is also some evidence in the judge’s words of his underlying disappointment with the fact that the parties could not come to an equitable agreement before the matter finally went to trial. The ruling is peppered with comments wherein the judge said, in essence, that while there had almost certainly been numerous opportunities for sensible compromise and setting the record straight, the two sides seemed “determined to fight themselves to a standstill.” It is reasonable, therefore, to assume that the outcome was affected by this; and, further, that that was probably a factor in the judge’s decision to award the plaintiff £75,000 toward his litigation costs even before actual damages are finally determined and awarded, as is slated to happen in October. However, the judge also indicated that McKenna may have to pick up some of his own expenses if they are deemed, by the hearing in October, to be unreasonable for the newspaper to cover. Court observers have predicted that, given the judge's disappointment with this case — a case which he called “curious,” and about which he opined, “[w]hat all this has achieved is open to question” — the actual damages awarded, despite McKenna’s £1.5 million claim, could be as low as from £20,000 to £50,000. In my opinion, that’s from £19,999.99 to £49,999.99 too much... but I digress.

While all of this is interesting — perhaps even amusing — from a US perspective, there is great tragedy here. In addition to the fundamental tragedy that most of what the judge considered should not have actually mattered; and in addition to the tragedy of the message this ruling sends to others suggesting that maybe a diploma mill credential isn’t such a bad thing after all; the additional — and perhaps most compelling — tragedy of this ruling is that when McKenna obtained his so-called “PhD,” LaSalle University was, indeed, a diploma mill; and said “degree” was, indeed, obtained for little or no actual academic work.

And in a US court of law, that would have been the end of it. Period.

You see, in the US, truth is an absolute defense to claims of defamation; and the burden of proof for the plaintiff increases exponentially if he happens to be a public figure, as Mr. McKenna clearly is. Had this case been heard in the US, the defendant Daily Mirror newspaper would likely have prevailed; and neither the plaintiff’s state of mind, his intent, his determination, his demeanor, nor even the degree to which he could show that he had been harmed by the words which he alleged had so mightily stung him would have mattered.

That any of those things mattered to this judge is a travesty of justice.

There was a small silver lining, however. The judge did agree that some of the plaintiff’s claim was simply baseless. McKenna had denied that his “PhD” was bogus or that he had merely purchased it; claiming, instead, that he “earned” it, getting “top grades for most, if not all” of the courses he completed. But the Court called such a claim “manifestly inaccurate.”

“This ... is quite incomprehensible,” Justice Eady wrote of McKenna’s claim. “He did not complete those courses.”

However, the judge then went on to ascribe McKenna’s actions to his ignorance, at the time, of how the academic world operated; adding that it was always necessary, when assessing McKenna’s state of mind, to recall just how little he knew about such things. The judge based that assessment, in part, on McKenna’s claim that he had not known of LaSalle’s nefarious underpinnings until after he had submitted his final project... a thesis which later became the basis for his book, “Change Your Life in Seven Days;” and also became the foundation for a series of tapes called “Success for Life,” both of which McKenna has since turned into two of his £2.5 million company’s flagship products.

LaSalle University was originally founded by a fellow named James Kirk (aka, Thomas Kirk or Thomas McPherson), and the so-called “institution” operated for nearly 10 years as a diploma mill until early 1997, when US investigators — including the FBI, US Postal Inspectors, and the IRS, among others — concluded a five-year investigation by raiding the place and arresting Kirk and others on multiple counts of tax fraud, money laundering, mail fraud, and various other federal charges. More than $10 million in cash was seized, and hundreds of boxes of evidence of several thousand students having been defrauded was recovered. Adding to the egregiousness of it all, investigators learned that the agency which LaSalle claimed was its accreditor (the now-defunct Council for Post-Secondary Christian Education) was, itself, bogus... a mere figment of LaSalle’s founder’s vivid imagination.

Kirk pleaded guilty, and at his sentencing hearing (during which he was given five years in federal prison) the judge referred to LaSalle's students — one of whom was McKenna — as “innocent victims.” Of course, McKenna’s attorney in the Daily Mirror case made sure that the UK judge knew of the US judge’s earlier characterization.

“LaSalle offered extensive literature, interaction with its students, and an unwillingness to take every applicant or to sanction every proposal for a thesis,” said Desmond Browne, plaintiff McKenna’s attorney, adding that it was impossible, therefore, to find that McKenna was “aware” that his doctorate was fraudulent.

But the defendant Daily Mirror’s attorney, John Kelsey-Fry, took strong issue with that misleading characterization, pointing out that McKenna, after a lifetime of dyslexia and an unsuccessful academic career in which he had achieved only two “O” levels, one CSE, and one “A” level in art, was able to simply pay to LaSalle a nominal fee of just over $2,600 and was then given credit for 10 years of “life experience” and was, therefore, exempted from all PhD coursework; and that he then merely submitted a short, 50,000-word dissertation (barely of typical masters thesis length, and objectively not in the same league as an accredited doctoral program dissertation) in order to obtain his so-called “PhD” in hypnotherapy.

“McKenna is an intelligent man,” Kelsey-Fry argued before the Court. “We suggest that such a man could not conceivably have believed that the programme he undertook could legitimately have placed him in the ranks of upper academia. What he wanted was not betterment, education and study but the three letters (PhD) he was seeking and which he got. He wanted them for sound commercial reasons.”

However, the judge concluded that it was “crystal clear” that McKenna sincerely believed that the “PhD,” albeit unaccredited but lawfully conferred upon him, was earned by his own original work... a factor which should not have mattered one whit when all that should have been at issue was whether what the Daily Mirror had published was, at long last, provably true. When it comes to doctoral degrees, what one sincerely believes about the value of one‘s work plays little role. One may not, for example, do completely legitimately and objectively high-quality doctoral-level work in a given subject area and then simply designate oneself a “PhD” merely on account of it; or even merely on account of one’s having submitted it to just any ol’ place. That to which the work is submitted must be a legitimate, authorized, preferably accredited, and legally incorporated conveyor of doctoral-level degrees... something LaSalle was not. McKenna’s allegedly mistaken belief that it was, even if true, does not change that fact; nor would it have mitigated in his favor in any US court of law.

The fact is, all that Lewis-Smith wrote was that McKenna’s degree was bogus, and that the so-called “university” from whence it came was, provably, a diploma mill... both of which statements, as it turns out, were incontrovertibly true.

LaSalle did not become “legitimate” in any sense of that word until after Kirk was arrested and a group of well-intentioned Louisiana investors bought it and tried to operate it honorably, first as “LaSalle University” for about a year and a half until late 1999, and then as “Orion College” from early 2000 until late 2002. From mid-1997 until late 2002, LaSalle/Orion required real and rigorous coursework of its students, and offered legitimate (albeit unaccredited) degrees... none of which were at the doctoral level, or were in “hypnosis” or “hypnotherapy” or any derivative thereof. In 1999, Orion applied for accreditation by an agency approved by the US Department of Education (USDE) and its Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), but that application was denied; and with that failure, Orion finally closed in late-2002 and, today, exists no longer.

McKenna’s alleged “degree,” however, was obtained before mid-1997... back when LaSalle was a notorious diploma mill; and I would characterize his so-called “PhD” as, simply stated, not worth the gun powder it would take to blow it up! Lewis-Smith’s word “bogus,” as applied to either McKenna’s alma mater, or his credential, doesn't even begin to capture the magnitude of it. Moreover, I will never believe that McKenna did not know exactly what he was doing, and exactly how he thought he could “hoodwink” pretty much everyone... including, apparently, a British judge some ten years later.

Those who take the shortcut of purchasing diploma mill credentials nearly always know exactly what they’re doing. At best, their desperation to achieve some kind of appearance of credibility propels them to the ill-fated choice of simply ignoring every indication that what they’re doing is probably wrong; and they fool themselves into believing that it will somehow be alright in the end.

That Mr. McKenna may have done something as nearly innocent as that is the most doubt for which I will give him benefit; and even that is difficult, given the fact that once he knew that LaSalle was a diploma mill, he nevertheless continued to publicly claim the “PhD” he obtained from it even though he knew it to be fake; and he tried to get away with it for as long as he possibly could... that is, until the Daily Mirror’s Mr. Lewis-Smith busted him. If that is not the very definition of disingenuousness, then I don’t know what is.

Moreover, I would invite Mr. McKenna to sue me in a US court of law over my having said these things here. It is my fervent hope, in fact, that by what I have written here, Mr. McKenna will consider me to have pilloried him to the utmost; and that the result will be that he will lose millions of dollars in revenues because his customers no longer trust him. Few things would give me greater pleasure or satisfaction than litigating a defamation claim filed by him in a US court of law where truth would be my absolute — and unquestionably successful — defense, and where the court allows no other issues to matter.

C’mon, Paul... wouldn’t you like to dance over here in this country, where the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, and our body of sophisticated defamation laws which favor truth above all else, and which impose upon public figures like you a substantially higher burden of proof, would protect me (and would have protected the Daily Mirror) from the likes of you? I’d consider the money spent on an attorney to fight you a well-placed investment in getting the truth out to others whom you may defraud. And trust me when I tell you, sir, that every time you put “PhD” behind your name, or claim that you have a “doctorate” in hypnotherapy or anything else, you’re defrauding anyone and everyone who sees or hears it. Depriving you of any benefit from making such outrageous claims would, truly, be a labor of love.

It is worthy of note that accredited degrees in hypnosis or hypnotherapy, at any level — from undergraduate to doctoral — are virtually non-existent anywhere in the English-speaking world. I have done some considerable research on this subject in the past, and all I have ever found are some accredited (and quite credible) certificates and diplomas in Australia; and some credible continuing education courses (and even a few certificates) offered by some accredited US community colleges.

There are, of course, any number of individuals, and hypnosis or hypnotherapy associations and societies offering all manner of training seminars, courses and programs... some of them quite credible, but none of them accredited certificate, diploma or degree programs... despite what some of them may claim.

There is one “Doctor of Philosophy in Clinical Hypnotherapy (PhD)” program offered by a state-approved university in the US. That same institution also offers a “Bachelor of Clinical Hypnotherapy (BCH),” a “Doctor of Clinical Hypnotherapy (DCH),” and a “Doctor of Esoteric Studies (DES/PhD)”... every one of which programs, to the last of them, is unaccredited. That said, there is some evidence that those programs require real and rigorous work of their students, though whether said work is of a quality, or accumulates to an amount, in any academic sense, that is worthy of the degree levels ultimately attained is always a question. Accreditation’s perhaps most noble purpose is to objectively and conclusively assess and determine such things so that such as we, in situations and at moments like this, don’t have to speculate.

In my research I did discover one — and only one — accredited masters degree in hypnotherapy from a quite credible university in the UK... the only accredited hypnosis or hypnotherapy credential, at its level or higher, which I have ever been able to find anywhere among English-speaking nations; and I have never been able to find any accredited degrees in hypnosis or hypnotherapy at the undergraduate level, anywhere.

In the United States, there is just one (1) certificate and/or diploma program in hypnosis and/or hypnotherapy that is fully accredited by a USDE- and/or CHEA-approved agency; but there are no accredited US degree programs in either hypnosis or hypnotherapy... least of all, at the doctoral level.

For the most part, hypnosis or hypnotherapy is but one treatment modality (and, in many places, a quite controversial one) taught in any number of accredited psychology degree programs throughout the English-speaking world... none of which contain either the word “hypnosis” or “hypnotherapy” anywhere in their degree titles; or in their declared majors, minors, or concentration areas.

So, whenever someone like Paul McKenna says they have a PhD in hypnosis or hypnotherapy, don’t believe them. Or, if you insist on believing them, you may at least safely assume that it’s unaccredited. If such a credential also happens to have come from the likes of the diploma mill LaSalle University prior to mid-1997, then it’s also quite bogus...

...just as Daily Mirror columnist Victor Lewis-Smith said it was.

I think that those making purchases from Mr. McKenna’s wildly successful £2.5 million company should probably know that... and beware. Those with diploma mill credentials are rarely ever innocent. They’re usually as culpable as the diploma mills themselves. When they get caught, as Mr. McKenna did, it’s never pretty... and they always cry foul with a fervor of biblical proportions.

If one always keeps these things in mind, one will never be hoodwinked... as the Honorable Mr. Justice Eady was in this case.

One is might wonder what it would have taken for the judge to see things more clearly; or how he would have ruled if Mr. McKenna’s PhD had been in the area of, for example, law.

Today, Paul McKenna lives in West London. He’s said to be worth in excess of £10 million, and he regularly hosts weight-loss and corporate leadership seminars for which attendees typically shell-out as much as £7,000 a seat. The “TV and Showbiz” section of the London Daily Mail newspaper wrote shortly after the verdict that “any sense of triumph McKenna felt will be tempered by the ordeal of having had his lowly academic credentials pored over in public. Even the entertainer himself appeared doubtful as to whether the court action had enhanced his reputation,” at which point the newspaper cited McKenna’s having told London’s Channel 4 News that even though he didn’t want to bring the case to court, his having done so has put his degree “on the radar.”

However, before your heart bleeds for Mr. McKenna, recall the old adage: “All publicity is good publicity.”

It was legendary screen actress and comedienne Mae West who famously said, “I don’t care what they say about me in the papers, just as long as they spell my name right.” Her sagely wise quip revealed her acute understanding of what is as true now as it was then: That long after people forget why they read about you, they recall that they read about you.

To people in Paul McKenna’s line of work, that’s usually good enough.


My well-known anti-diploma mill activism will, almost certainly, earn me derision or worse here and elsewhere for this posting. That's par for the course, and is of no concern to me. The attacks will never deter me from speaking out against millists and the harm they do, and those who tout their bogus credentials. Mr. McKenna may be very good at what he does; and he may be beloved by millions... including most everyone here, for all I know. But facts are facts, and now you know them.

This isn't about hypnosis or hypnotherapy being bad, or Mr. McKenna being bad at it... which I strongly suspect he's not. This isn't about Mr. McKenna's expertise (of which I'm sure he has much), or how much anyone -- here or elsewhere -- likes, trusts and/or respects him. It's about the very narrow issue of his claiming a completely bogus -- yes, that's the right word -- PhD from an out-and-out diploma mill; and the wrong message that his having won a law suit over it sends to the world... and, more than that, the harm it could do to those misled thereby.

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