manufacture of lies is the alternative
If you read more than a couple of messages on the alt.freemasonry newsgroup during 2001 or 2002, you've surely seen Mike Restivo's bizarre posts regarding pornography.
In fact, if you were to read just one or two of his frenzied and turgid messages, you'd think that the Masons were engaged in some sort of horrid conspiracy to corrupt the children of the world using the alt.freemasonry newsgroup. This is, of course, reality only in the tortured mind of Mike Restivo.
The facts, plainly and simply, are that Mike Restivo - a 55 year old unemployed student in Toronto, Canada on welfare - claims he decided to prove that Masons were evil and to trap them using sado-masochistic pornography which HE wrote and placed on HIS website! (There may, however, be an alternative explanation: Mike got caught with his 'pants down', so to speak. As you read Mike's plaintive wails demanding that we accept his claim of a planned entrapment, consider too his clearly lacking web/computer skills which we elaborate on here. Mikey playing powiceman or getting caught with profanity on his website: you decide!)
Sound like you've just entered 'The Twilight Zone'? Well, perhaps you have. Despite the typical Restivo obfuscation through which he attempts to transfer blame for his cowardly and obscene deeds onto others, the facts are simple: Mike wrote the filth, placed it on HIS personal web space on his ISP, removed the 'index.html' page which protected it from prying eyes but now endlessly repeats his claim that it's others who are 'bad'....
Here then is the story of
how a formerly capable and scholarly person became so self-absorbed that his
life seems to reflect only vacuous and vain behavior. It is also the story of
illegal hacking (read: using the backspace key!)....
Here's how it all developed:
In the alt.freemasonry newsgroup, Mike Restivo posted a message commenting broadly on one of his favorite topics: the behavior expected of Masons. Despite the fact that Mike attended only three Masonic meetings (those at which he received his degrees some two decades ago before then abandoning the Fraternity), Mike feels somehow uniquely qualified to preach on Masonic morality and proscribe how Masons should act (while emphatically reminding everyone that he and he alone exemplifies those high moral virtues). In the middle of the message, he advised the reader to go to his website to read more about "Masonic morality" at the following address:
Being online at the time downloading a software update, this site's author blithely clicked on the link to see what foolishness and verbosity Mike was engaged in now.
After quickly tiring from the reading a tedious and banal article outlining his perceptions of Masonic morality, we decided to see if Mike had revised the many web pages he had posted about us on his site a couple of years earlier.
MasonicInfo Note: the links below are not operative and we've used purple to show them. Mike has changed his ISP since this incident. Did they take exception to his violation of their acceptable use policy? Did they refuse to support him in his bizarre attempts to blame others for his pornography? We'll never know the full story. Suffice it to say, he's got a different ISP now....
On the page about Mike's conceptions of Masonic morality at "realfm", however, we could not find a link to Mike's home page or any means to get to his so-called "anti-cult" pages where we'd been listed.
Wondering if those anti-Ed pages had been removed, we used the backspace key to go to http://www.pathcom.com/~mtronics/ in order to arrive at the site's home page and find a link there.
To our surprise, at http://www.pathcom.com/~mtronics/ there was neither a home page nor the standard "no page found" error message. Instead, directory browsing had been enabled for the site. This caused a directory of all pages and sub-directories to be listed. In reviewing what we'd found, we noted a directory titled "erotica". Not having seen such a directory when reviewing his site from an HTML page at other times, we became curious - but assumed that this was just another attempt by Mike Restivo to use words which most people interpret in one way but which he demands they interpret as he wishes them to do.
When we clicked on the directory, it opened an HTML page introducing us to the the site featuring "The Adventures of Sir Stephen" with the following:
This web site is reserved for my fantasy and fictional accounts involving a variety of human sexual relationships probed from an emotional and psychological perspective towards the optimal understanding of the limits, if any, of sexual relationships. These accounts involve fictional composites of persons and involve real sexual theories whose candid and explicit exploration of heterosexual sex, or domination and submission and bondage and discipline, is only for the edification of the sexually mature adult. The sexuality is detailed, intense and prolonged.
We were absolutely astonished. Over the past few years, we'd seen Mike Restivo regularly and vigorously flaunt his morality, claiming it to be in sharp contrast to essentially everyone online, particularly Masons! He was clearly proud of being a Christian mystic and the head of a Martinist organization for the past two decades (albeit with only himself as a member). He had often droned on the topic of morality - the cause of our arrival at that particular web location, in fact! He frequently used Biblical verse to support his declarations. It was quite a shock to say the least to find vile, disgusting descriptions of all types of sex, all apparently involving sadistic and demeaning treatment of women.
Shortly thereafter, we posted a message to the alt.freemasonry newsgroup questioning Mike's ability to address issues of morality when he had such filth on his website. We could have never in our wildest dreams imagined the result. Instead of slinking away in embarrassment, Mike proudly proclaimed that the material had been placed there as a "test". Further, he boldly announced that - rather than himself - is was WE were the pornographers in that we had "hacked into" his website and had "published" the pornography. How? By "illogically backspacing" and then placing a link to his filth in our message on alt.freemasonry. He proceeded to congratulate himself for having protected millions of innocent children from seeing HIS filthy material which HE had written and which HE had placed on his website after HE had (deliberately or unintentionally) removed the protections normally given to such material.
claims took everyone by surprise. Using the standard convention for getting to a
root directory (i.e. that big backspace key) could hardly be considered
'hacking' by anyone's definition but yet, by Mike's it was! He also claimed that
our message with the URL to his pornography made US the publisher of the porn
and not him! We certainly recognize that putting that URL in a message
which would be archived was probably inappropriate but incredulous as it seems,
Mike takes no responsibility for his part in this as author, publisher, and
enabler. Naturally, we knew that as soon as the site had been commented on
publicly, Mike would rush to hide it fearing the scorn he would receive from
Masons, some of whom had supported him vigorously in times past. We knew
full well that Mike's ego could not forbear either criticism of his "erotic
writing" abilities or examination by everyone reading alt.freemasonry of
the disgusting sadistic material of the individual who for so many months and
years had bragged about the superiority of his moral beliefs to that of all
Subsequently, in the typical 'Restivo twist', Mike began to assert proudly that his pornographic stories were "...cobbled together material that i never denied writing or sharing with a few intimate ladies." Didn't he write in the message quoted above that it was his sex life involved? Now he equivocates claiming that it was fantasy shared with others. Still later, he claims that the material was written strictly for the purpose of the "sting". Curious, isn't it?
Mike has often broadly hinted about his monastic life and he has publicly stated that he has lived in the same house his entire life. Consequently, these claims of a racy sex life involving sado-masochistic domination and submission (while simultaneously proclaiming that he alone can define Masonic morality) does leave rational individuals aghast. Even more disquieting are Mike's demands that we acknowledge he has a sex life. This all seems to clearly be the acts of a desperate individual living in a fantasy world.
Mike's attempts to extricate himself from the charges leveled against him reminds us of the story of the man who borrowed a jug. After he returned it, the owner found that it was broken and accused him of being the one who broke it. The man responded that he had not taken it in the first place; that it was already broken when he borrowed it; and, furthermore, that there was nothing wrong with it when he returned it. Think about it! <grin>
Mike now regularly posts on alt.freemasonry that he did not publish the material and any such claim is false. Concurrently, he argues that his copyright has been violated. Is this rational thinking? We don't believe so....
Why would someone do such a puerile thing? We're at a loss as to possible explanations.
Here's what Mike himself wrote though: see if it makes sense to you....
This page was created for
the reader who wishes to make an attempt at understanding some of the complexity
of the individual who is Mike Restivo. The above should give you an idea as
to what runs through his mind - or not....
The origins of Mike Restivo's "Sir Stephen" persona....
Mike Restivo dearly loves his "psychological probes". No doubt, he awaited with relish an immediate comment from an alt.freemasonry poster about his choice of porn-persona in order that he might further claim how evil Masons were because they knew the origin of his persona. However, no one fell into what he would claim was another of his "traps".
Anyone with even a passing familiarity with computers would find the claims that using a backspace to reach a higher-level web page was "hacking" and "criminal" to be hilarious. As a result, I was sharing the 'story of the backspace' with several IT Directors during a luncheon one day several weeks later. Two of the men at the table started to chuckle when I mentioned the "Sir Stephen" moniker. I became curious about their reactions. They then told me 'the rest of the story':
"Sir Stephen" is one of the principles in the classic and highly erotic work The Story of O by Pauline Reage (Dominique Aury). While this particular book achieved great popularity in the arena of pornography, those unfamiliar with the work will likely find it unsettling to know that the 'nom-de-net' Mike Restivo chose as his identity was a principal character in a story that brutalizes, victimizes, tortures, and degrades women to fanatical levels. Women's organizations without exception find the book grossly offensive and I personally think it's shameful Mike Restivo would - with such premeditation - 'bait his trap' in such a loathsome manner (if, in fact, it really was a trap as Mike has described and not a discovery of his real-life fantasies writ large on the web by accident!). Until the publication of the information here several weeks after the incident, there was no mention of Mike Restivo's deliberately chosen nom-de-plume, probably because no Mason there had plumbed the depths of sado-masochism as Mike Restivo has apparently done.
In light of his behavior towards certain posters on alt.freemasonry who previously supported his attempts to return to active Masonic membership by making false accusations accompanied by slurs and name-calling, we now believe there are very few who will still consider him a "Brother".... We also think this may account for Mike's violent reaction when it was revealed that the individual who had previously identified him as directly assisting anti-Masons in a covert way while he vocally denying ever having done so was, in fact, a woman!
In September, 1998, Mike Restivo posted these words:
While we're sure that Mike thinks he's simply exposed more evil intent on the part of Masons, we must sadly conclude that he himself instead has provided the proof he taunted others to provide.
In August, 2001, Mike Restivo posted these words:
We find it truly amazing
that someone who writes sado-masochistic pornography demeaning women in
the extreme, claims it to be about his own sex life, and then places it on the
web to either aggrandize that life or to 'trap' his (imagined) enemies (or both)
would then brag about his own 'moral worth'. We also find it pitiful that Mike
Restivo truly believes people would waste even a small portion of their life
trying to discredit him when he obviously is quite capable of doing it SO very
well by himself. The ultimate absurdity, however, is that Restivo is either
incapable or unwilling to accept responsibility for his repugnant acts.
For more 'Fun with the Martyr', select one of these:
Copyright 2002. Edward L. King. All rights reserved.