by Clint Fuhs
CHAPTER 9 – WEAPONIZING PERSONAL STORY
In most tellings of Marc’s story, the events of 2011 are rarely afforded more than just a passing reference. As Ken Wilber said at the time, they involved “so much flame, so little fact” that it seemed easier, if not rather convenient, to pay them the degree of attention that a so-called scandal aptly deserved.
In the early part of 2011, Marc was navigating a mutual, amicable breakup with spiritual writer Mariana Caplan. As one might expect, he then started dating. Within a period of a few months, he was going out two people—Kaela Ryan, the editor of a book he was publishing with Sounds True, and Marcy Baruch, a musician whom he met at an event and later employed at the organization that later became the Center for Integral Wisdom.
Ryan and Baruch, both in their mid-forties at the time, were aware that Marc was dating the other—in fact, the three of them hung out together on one occasion. Both as Marc reports and as evidenced in their email exchanges (some of which will be shared later in this book), both women were active and interested parties to what looked like consensual, nonexclusive dating relationships between adults.
Now here’s the twist. The scandal that erupted in August of 2011 was not the result complaints made by either of these women. Neither went to the police, nor did they make claims against Marc in the press or any where else. In fact, on the day the so-called scandal went public, neither were at odds with him enough to even end their relationships or cut off contact. This scandal was not generated by the inclinations or actions of new alleged victims. It was collectively created by a small but insidiously persistent faction of the public who had been waiting for the other shoe to drop.
And it is for this reason that the scandal that never was actually became significant, even if that is only apparent in hindsight. It portended the 2016 smear, at least insofar as it was a demonstration of the power of negative meme propagation and the impact that negative memes have interpretations of future events, regardless of fact. It also obliquely lent credibility to 2006 false complaints, by virtue of the fact that it appeared to bolster the veracity of an assumed pattern of behavior. And most importantly, it substantiated the irrepressible influence of third parties as drivers of Marc’s story. If the supposed victims did not instigate the scandal, then how did it come to pass?