Hales certainly fancies himself as a great businessman – schooled by his late father as he loves to tell his followers. No doubt he also sees himself as the greatest architect of Brethren structure and makeovers in their checkered and increasingly cruel and illogical history.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. While he’s far too clever by half – he has stuffed up monumentally with some of his recent reversals. By embracing several things that were for years a Brethren no no – (and in so doing insulting the hell out of all those who were dealt with for these issues) he must today be stroking his jaw and wondering whether he did the right thing. But I’ll ease you into this because the issues and effects are astounding.
When Hales gave his throng the green light on computers – he in effect- opened up a Pandora’s box that many – having loads of time on their hands – sought to exploit and plunder to its full and wonderful depths. I will wager that there are Exclusive Brethren out there today who know more about computers and how they work and what you can do with them than most of us. (With the exception of course- of Admin!)
For example- scores of Brethren mothers today Skype all over the world to talk to loved ones and friends. Up until two years ago I thought a Skype was an English water-bird. But now – your average Brethren woman might be trussed up in denim dresses and scarves and be devoid of hair dye and makeup- but she can set up her cam and direct her search engine to get her buddies on the line for a nice sit down and some face to face dialogue. The only trouble with this medium is that the young people can do it too. And they are far more adventurous. And quick on the technological uptake.
But – I hear you screaming- this can’t be true! Mister Bruce said they must only use HIS computers with the seriously dumbed down software that doesn’t let you have unfettered access to the internet and which can be accessed by his IT KGB henchmen looking to see what you are looking at – and accessing your turnover for the month. And I respond with the words of a once famous Australian politician- Pig’s arse!
The modern day Peeb is no dill. He gets the same catalogues in the mail as everyone else – and when he reads the ads from Dick Smith or Harvey Norman flogging the latest laptops with ALL the bells and whistles – he (or she) now knows what it all means. So they quietly shelve Bruce’s antiquated, lethargic, wheezing, over-priced old laptop and go and buy the new uncensored model with all the apps and the 2TB memory card. They can do what they like now with no repercussions.
You might recall that this was a problem that Bruce became aware of – probably because his IT KGB henchmen said – ‘Woo Bruce- these buggers aren’t using their computers half enough! How are we gonna make money from this – er- going forward?’ So Bruce- issued an official memo to each assembly to be read out loud – offering an amnesty to those who had hidden PC’s and Blackberries and mobile thingummies in their abodes – with a further offer to even buy them back at agreed market prices. According to my source- they didn’t even get a tenth of them.
Which is why today – you will see a faint glow in every Peeb bedroom at night, in every town from here to Barbados. Not forgetting the poor old love in a bedroom somewhere in Australia whom I have reported on in the past, who despite being close to 80 – and never having experienced the joy of a man in her life – who has discovered through the wonder of the Net – entertainment. She has now fallen deeply in love with George Clooney. It’s home from the supper and straight into a re-run of Ocean’s Twelve and Thirteen for her. All courtesy of Bruce’s new thrust for technology and income.
Of course I welcome this. I also urge the Peebs who are suitably set up with a Bruce free model – although God knows I am probably several years too late here- to discover You Tube. The greatest entertainment medium ever devised. Think of something you want to see- type it in and sit back. In three hours you will have been prompted around the world and back again. Start with “Exclusive Brethren” it will fascinate you!
Of course- there is a downside to this sort of wonderful – what’s the word – Worldliness! And that is the kids. They have discovered dating sites – some to their misadventure and most have probably stumbled across something called pornography. Unthinkable in my day. There’s many the Brethren youth today who spends much of his down time as it were, being a Merchant Banker. And many have left because they can see a world of opportunity out there. Many have searched for something called a ‘career’ and planned their getaway in their bedrooms months in advance. All thanks to Bruce’s newly allowed technology.
According to my source – young kids are still leaving in droves. I protested to my informer – “Surely you jest! Mister Bruce’s website says that they practically lose no one and have practically no divorces”. “Rubbish”- was the answer – “there’s a whole new wave of kids who are walking away. Just like they did in the 70’s and 80’s.”
Bruce’s fiscal greed and quest to create a Universal Business model has also created problems. We hear reports recently of a major Brethren business in Australia – which has special Bruce dispensation to operate 24 /7 due to its success in its field. It is currently sacking all of its Brethren employees- but not the worldly ones. Why – we don’t know as yet – but we will. Some younger brothers were working overtime here instead of going to meetings – so this might explain this bizarre reversal of fortune for them.
And – as I reported several years ago- many married Brethren wives work- despite the falsehoods of the official Peeb Website. Each and every day. Especially the poorer ones who are trying to raise and feed a tribe of kids. Apparently Bruce turns a blind eye to this activity – because it means more money into his coffers and family trusts and the Brethren system as a whole.
So while Bruce thinks he is very smart and clever by introducing things into the Brethren arena that they can no longer live without (despite wrecking thousands of families for the same thing) little by little – it is all starting to unravel.
And the news for the future is not good- as more people become disenchanted with his huge business emphasis, his constant grabs for cash, his all seeing Hench-teams – and his general rudeness and arrogance in his dealings with the Brethren themselves. Like making them wait for him constantly and his constant shuffling of the rules that they had gotten used to.
But it will be this technology that does more damage to them than anything else.
Remember I said that.